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Democrats welcome Sugar Committee report

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MEDIA RELEASE ---------------- -- - . T H E S b N A T E

Brisbane Mav 1989

PR No 89 / 198


The Australian Democrats have welcomed the recommendations of the Senate Committee of Inquiry into the sugar industry.

The Committee's major recommendations were for (i) the current embargo on the import of sugar to be lifted, and (11) a sliding scale tariff to be introduced when the value of imported sugar falls below a certain level.

Democrat's Deputy Leader, Senator Michael Macklin, said: "The unanimous support from Committee members of all political parties meant that the recommendations would most likely be supported in the parliament."

Senator Macklin said that, in the international political context, the Committee's recommendation for the introduction of a new sliding scale tariff system may create some concern because it proposed change to a longĀ­ standing system.

However the Committee recommendations, if implemented, would help to restore confidence in the future of Australia's sugar industry which contributed over $800 million in export earnings in 1987.

Senator Macklin said: "The recommendations would mean an opening-up of the industry, which has enjoyed an import embargo for some 70 years, but still ensure that domestic producers were not totally subjected to the violent price fluctuations of the world sugar market."

The constructive work of tills S e n a te C o m m itte e , w h ic h w a s e s ta b lis h e d with the approval of the Australian Democrats, again illustrates the value of' Senate scrutiny of government legislation and consultation with affected industry groups.

Further Information: Senator Michael Macklin (062) 77 5949

Q (J Printed in Australia by R. D. RUBtE, Commonwealth Government Printer. Canberra