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Tuesday, 27 April 1965

Senator HENTY - The Minister for Trade and Industry has supplied the following answer -

1.   2. 3. 4. 5 and 6. My views on this subject are, I believe, well known. I have said in the past in the Parliament that an inflow of capital to an unlimited extent to buy out established Australian enterprises is not desirable. I have also said, however, that we need to have recourse to capital from other countries if we are to retain our rapid rate of growth. Development of manufacturing industries, in particular, has been sustained by capital inflow. Some of the more obvious cases of the advantages accompanying an inflow of investment capital, to which I have drawn attention in the past, are seen in the many new industries, such as motor vehicles, chemicals, plastics, engineering equipment and synthetic rubber, which have been established in Australia. I refer particularly to those projects which have brought to this country not simply money, but new knowhow and access to technical and secret processes.

I have stated that overseas investment, with all its advantages, also carries with it the risk that its flow is not always predictable - with corresponding risks for Australia's economic growth and balance of payments. As an example of this unpredictability, I need only mention the uncertainties for our capital inflow arising from the balance of payments programme recently adopted by President Johnson. In view of this type of risk, which is always with us, a country like Australia must make every effort to pay its way by earnings from exports. The Government's policies are directed towards this end.

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