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Wednesday, 3 August 1921

Senator BOLTON (Victoria) .- An Australian Parliament must legislate for the greatest good of the greatest number. We 'are told that the bananagrowing industry has "been carried on profitably and successfully under a Protective duty of ls. 6d. per cental. Arguments about the progress made during the war because of certain conditions prevailing elsewhere are quite useless. As a matter of fact, during the war the Fiji growers were able to export to Australia a largely increased quantity of bananas. But all this development has taken place under a duty of1s. 6d. per cental. Last year, however, the Government, possibly in following out' their Protective policy, and no doubt having due regard to the interests of this particular industry, raised the duty by nearly 100 per cent., and I cannot see why the banana-grower should expect more generous treatment. Yet extraordinary efforts have been made to influence opinion in this building by means of picture shows and other representations. I do not see why nine-tenths of the people of Australia should be penalized for the benefit of one small section. The demand of the Queensland banana-growers for a rate of1d. perlb. is a clear case of an attempt to profiteer on the rest of the people of Australia, in whose interests I feel it my duty to support the amendment.

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