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Tuesday, 5 May 1936

Senator JAMES McLACHLAN (SOUTH AUSTRALIA) - Perhaps that is so. In conversation with a reliable farmer recently I learned that he had been using an Australian stripper for four years without requiring a new belt-lace or new pin for it. That speaks volumes, either for the durability of the implement, or for the manner in which it had been treated by its owner.

Senator Gibson - Had it been taken out of the shed?

Senator JAMESMcLACHLAN.Yes; my informant was not the type of person to permit it to rust in idleness. I regret that I am unable to agree with Senator McLeay concerning the gesture we are making in regard to our trade balance. All things must have a beginning; but we have been very tardy in taking steps to rectify our trade balance with, the United States of America. Corrective action should have been taken years ago; even if the action now contemplated is only a small gesture, it will indicate to the United States of America that unless it is prepared to negotiate a trade agreement with us, we must buy in other markets. One honorable senator referred to luxury imports from America. He cited motor car chassis, and mentioned that General Motors-Holdens Limited in South Australia employed thousands of Australian workers. While admitting the truth of that contention, I fear that the big profits made by that enterprise belong to the United States of America, - and eventually find their way there. In my opinion, the trade balance of the Commonwealth is a far more important consideration than one tariff item.

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