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Transcript of doorstop, Newlands Senior Citizens' Club, East Coburg

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JOURNALIST: Prime Minister, on the Sunday show this morning there was some thought to Mr Bush wanting to go up to - or President Bush to go up to Kakadu. Would you agree with that? Would you like to go with him?

PM: I wouldn't mind going with him. When I was talking to the President when I was over there last he expressed an interest about going to Kakadu. Well it would be nice if I had the chance of going with him. I don't know whether I will but I'm not surprised that he wants to see it because in my judgement it's one of the most beautiful parts, not just of Australia but of the world.

JOURNALIST: Do you believe the trade problems we've got with America can be settled before he comes here?

PM: I don't know whether they can be settled before he gets here. Essentially our problems and their resolution depend upon a resolution of the Uruguay Round. Now that's got a very critical period ahead of it now and if we can get a

sensible outcome of that then of course you'll see the orderly dismantling of the system of subsidies and export supports which are at the foundation of the problem that we have, not just with the United States but most particularly with the Europeans. The Americans are ready to change their procedures but obviously not until the Europeans bring theirs down and so the ball is very much in the Europeans' court and we're trying to put as much pressure on them as we can.

JOURNALIST: Prime Minister do you think that those trade problems could be a major irritant in the talks between the countries?

PM: Well we've had to live with that up until now. We have been very strong and straightforward in putting our concerns to this Administration and the one before it. Of course what

they say is that they don't intend to hurt us and that is true, they don't intend to hurt us. Their objective is to make the Europeans dismantle their system of protective internal and export subsidies. Now I just hope that they

will have that impact quickly and that we can get a positive result out of the Uruguay Round which is going on at this time. Because if we can do that then that, as I say, is the way that we end the problem with the United States but most particularly with the Europeans.

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JOURNALIST: ... are you going to crack the whip over the Ministers?

PM: You just leave it to me. I am going about the business, quietly, of ensuring that we get a budget which is appropriate for ensuring that we get a strong and sustainable recovery from the recession and that's what I'm about,

together with the Treasurer and the Expenditure Review Committee and we'll produce that result. That's the important thing for Australia.

JOURNALIST: Mr Hawke, there seems to be more trouble flowing at Iraq. Is it likely that Australia will be committed back there?

PM: There's no suggestion that there'll be any requirement of the re-creation of the Multi-national force structure which operated there at the beginning of this year. I hope that Saddam will realise the commitment, not just of the United States but you'11 notice that they have the support of the five permanent members of the Security Council who are

insisting that the resolutions of the Security Council be adhered to. Now I hope that Saddam Hussein will have the good sense to understand that the Security Council means what it says so that there won't be any need for any further action.

JOURNALIST: Do you plan to be talking to Senator Richardson this week about his comments?

PM: I've just made my comments about that. What I'm about is ensuring that we have a total concentration of my relevant Ministers on the preparation of the budget. That's what I'll require, that's what I'll get.