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Friday, 18 November 1921

Senator E D MILLEN (NEW SOUTH WALES) (Minister for Repatriation) . - When this item was originally before the Government, and I think when it was before the other Chamber, there was reason to believe that operations on a big scale were about to be launched, but the enterprise has not materialized.

Senator Senior - For what reasons?

Senator E D MILLEN (NEW SOUTH WALES) - I cannot say. The promoters probably thought that it was not a sufficiently attractive opening. The original duty was made a deferred one, because it was thought that some time would elapse before the factory would be in a position to deliver supplies. Now the industry is not to be proceeded with.

Senator Wilson - For the obvious reason that the Government are not encouraging it.

Senator E D MILLEN (NEW SOUTH WALES) - That has nothing to do with the matter.

Senator Senior - Is the mining industry equal to-day to what it was in 1914?

Senator E D MILLEN (NEW SOUTH WALES) - Of course not. That industry is somewhat under a cloud, but we are not likely to lift the burden from it by making the requisites for carrying on the industry dearer. Until explosives are produced in Australia on a sufficiently large scale to meet local needs, the proposed duty would make the articles dearer to the men who have to use them.

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