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Friday, 18 December 1914

Senator MILLEN (New South Wales) . - In view of the expressions of opinion by honorable senators, I thought that the Assistant Minister would have endeavoured to meet the general desire. But as he apparently intends to force the measure through this Chamber, there is another argument that I propose to address to the Committee. By interjection just now the honorable senator endeavoured to institute a comparison between imported and Australian whiskies. As we are now invited to raise the strength of whisky from 35 to 45 per cent, overproof, I would like to ask what are the figures in regard to imported whiskies. As I understand the position, they still stand at 35 per cent. In other words, our Australian whiskies are to be of lower quality than are imported whiskies. Until further information, upon this matter is forthcoming, I hope that the Bill will not be pressed. Seeing that the existing Tariff has been in operation for two or three years, and that no complaints have been received under this heading, I would suggest that the consideration of the measure should be deferred until we meet again.

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