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Tuesday, 8 June 1926


Senator THOMPSON (Queensland) . - The admission of scrap iron free would not make the slightest difference to the great iron and steel industry, nor would it build up the copper-mining industry. I can pay a tribute to the iron and steel industry. To my own knowledge, Broken Hill structural steel has been sold in Queensland at £5 5s. a .ton. less than the landed cost of similar steel from overseas. This fact proves that a duty of £1 a ton on scrap iron will not make the slightest difference to the operations of the Broken Hill Proprietary's iron and steel works. On the other hand, the admission of scrap iron free of duty would be of some slight assistance to the coppermining industry. Unfortunately, at die present time, most of the copper mines in Australia are closed down, but there are still some of them working, and they use a large quantity of scrap iron in leaching their copper. It is with a view to getting some slight assistance for them that I ask for this small reduction of duty. I do not think the Minister (Senator Crawford) was correct in stating that pig iron is brought to Australia freight free. Scrap iron may occasionally be brought here freight free, and I have my doubts on that point, but I have had to pay freight on pig iron.


Senator Crawford - I think I said that it was carried at a very low freight.


Senator THOMPSON - The request I make is a very small one. Although the reduction I propose would not make the slightest difference to the great iron and steel industry, it might be of some slight assistance to the copper-mining industry, which needs all the aid we can give to it.







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