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Tuesday, 5 May 1936

Senator MILLEN (Tasmania) . - I followed closely the remarks of the Leader of the Senate (Senator Pearce), and I am sure that if any one will be delighted with the right honorable senator's remarks it will be Mr. Scullin, who took similar action to that suggested, when our overseas trade balance was in a serious position. At that time we were not enthusiastic supporters of his views. We have got somewhat off the track, as we have been speaking of the United States of America, a country from which agricultural implements are imported in only small quantities. Those who intend to support the request are not in favour of increasing imports, but are anxious to reduce the prices of locallymanufactured implements, and the only way to do that is by reducing the duty. When duties are increased it follows that prices increase; as the duties are lessened, prices fall. Prices follow duties pari passu- We are anxious to reduce the cost of implements locally manufactured. Heavy customs duties seems to make multi-millionaires of a few, without conferring any benefit upon the artisans. The only way to reduce the profits pf the local manufacturers is by lowering the duty; all this talk of trade balances and increasing imports is only misleading the committee.

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