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Thursday, 18 August 1921


Senator DE LARGIE (Western Australia) . - Whilst there may be good reason for lower duties against scrap iron from Great Britain than from outside countries, I do not know that we would be justified in absolutely shutting it out, because that will be the effect of the imposition of heavy duties as proposed, for the simple reason that scrap iron is very much used in the production of the raw material for the iron manufacturing industries. It is necessary to mix scrap and pig iron in order to produce raw material of really good quality-. Therefore, if we impose a duty on scrap-iron we shall, indirectly, be increasing the cost of the raw material tothose engaged in our secondary iron industries, and to that extent reduce the amount of protection afforded to them. under other items in the schedule. Ironmoulding shops were established throughout the Commonwealth long before the Lithgow or Newcastle steel works came into being, , and they have had to import scrap iron for mixing with pig iron even since then. I think some difference should be made in the duty, though on the spur of the moment I am not prepared to say what the difference should be. I do not wish to see any of our established industries placed at a disadvantage; but I think we will be making, a very great mistake indeed if we impose a heavy duty, as suggested by Senator Duncan. I think some consideration should be given to the importers of scrap iron.


Senator Henderson - It used to be used largely in every blast.


Senator DE LARGIE - Yes, and in a sense there would be just as much justification for .imposing a duty on iron ore as there is for putting a duty on scrap iron. If Senator Russell is not so prepared to fix a low rate of duty upon scrap iron, he ought to defer the further consideration of the item until he has an opportunity of looking into the matter. I have no desire to see the primary or secondary iron industries of Australia handicapped by a mistaken policy such as the imposition of the duty proposed by Senator Duncan.







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