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Friday, 22 May 1936


Senator BROWN (Queensland) . - Under the proposed vote for the Prime Minister's Department, £7,100 is provided for the general expenses of the High Commissioner's Office in London. I take this opportunity to bring under the notice of the Leader of the Senate (Senator Pearce), the matter of advertising Australia in Great Britain, which I mentioned a few days ago. The Minister replied to certain statements made by a Mr. Donkin, whose remarks were published in the Labor Daily of the 12th May. A full report should be made of the policy adopted in advertising Australia and its products, because there is a concensus of opinion that publicity work in Great Britain on behalf of Australia is ineffective. Mr. Kitchen, a past president of the Associated Chambers of Commerce, said -

Day after day the public cry of buy Australian goods is sent forth at considerable expense, but absolutely nothing is being done to link that slogan with some definite tangible labels or trade mark which would sink into the minds of buyers, and thus extract from the public the maximum result. Hundreds of thousands of pounds spent on advertising was being thrown in the gutter.

Dr. S.K. Dwyer, of Gosford, who returned by the Jervis Bay, said -

The striking display in the show windows of South Africa House were changed daily, and every phase of the country's industry was advertised in this way. The windows were being used, not only to attract tourists to South Africa, but also to place the country's primary produce and manufactured goods before the British public. Advertisements featuring South African goods and tourists' attractions were to be seen in trams and trains, and in many other places. Australia's publicity was poor in comparison. The window displays at Australia House were rarely changed, and were for the most part made up only of travel posters and models of steamers". " They were, therefore, mostly deserted, while there was always a crowd around the windows of South Africa House.

From the two statements I have quoted, and from information received from time to time from overseas travellers, it appears that the Commonwealth is not getting the full benefit of the money expended in advertising Australia in Great Britain. The Leader of the Senate should give further information on the subject, and State whether there is room for improvement. Some time ago, I mentioned that greater publicity should be given to the attractions of Canberra, and the Minister promised that the matter would be looked into. I trust that something will be done in that direction.







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