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Industries Assistance Commission report - spectacle and sunglass frames, sunglasses etc



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PR ESS RELEASE 76/41

CONFIRMATION . INDUSTRIES ASSISTANCE COMMISSION REPORT COPY -------:— — ---------------— --------------------- -—

, · SPECTACLE AND SUNGLASS FRAMES

SONG-LASSES ETC.

The M in is te r f o r In d u s tr y and Commerce, S e n a to r R o b ert C o tto n , and th e M in is te r

f o r B u sin e ss and Consumer A f f a ir s , Mr John Howard, to d a y announced th e G overnm ent's d e c is io n on th e R ep o rt o f th e I n d u s tr ie s A ss is ta n c e Commission on S p e c ta c le and Sunglass

Fram es, S u n g la sse s, e t c . T his R ep o rt c o v ers f o u r m ain groups o f goods: ophthalm ic

s p e c ta c le fra m e s, s u n g la s s fram es and s u n g la s s e s , p r o te c tiv e eyew ear, and o th e r goods

c o m p risin g m ain ly p a r t s and p l a s t i c e y e p ie c e s .

The Government h as d e cid e d t h a t ophthalm ic and s u n g la s s fram es and s u n g la s s e s and p a r t s th e r e f o r would be a s s i s t e d i n i t i a l l y by a G eneral r a t e o f d u ty o f 55%·

T his r a t e w ill be phased to 50% a f t e r e ig h te e n months and to 25% a f t e r a f u r t h e r

e ig h te e n m onths. The re m a in d er o f th e goods u n d e r re fe re n c e w i l l be s u b je c t to a du ty

o f 25% on im p le m e n ta tio n . Goods o f New Z ealand o r ig i n w i l l be f r e e o f d u ty and e x i s t i n g

p r e f e r e n t i a l a rran g em en ts f o r d e v e lo p in g c o u n tr ie s w i l l c o n tin u e .

The M in is te r s s a id th e Government c o n sid e re d th e re was a need to p ro v id e a p e rio d

i n which th e in d u s tr y co u ld a d ju s t to a v o id d is r u p tiv e e f f e c t s which c o u ld a r i s e i f

a c tio n to reduce th e l e v e l s o f p r o te c tio n ( in c lu d in g th e e x i s t i n g im port lic e n s in g )

were ta k e n to o r a p id ly .

The Commission had acknow ledged t h a t th e l o c a l ophthalm ic frame m a n u fa c tu rin g in d u s tr y was e f f i c i e n t and w orthy o f p r o te c tio n and had recommended th e im m ediate im p lem en tatio n o f a G eneral r a t e o f d u ty o f 25 p e r c e n t and th e im m ediate rem oval o f

im port l i c e n s i n g . However, th e Government c o n sid e re d t h a t in o rd e r to m inim ise any

d is r u p tio n a s s o c ia te d w ith th e rem oval o f im port lic e n s i n g th e G eneral r a t e o f d u ty

sh o u ld be r a i s e d from th e p r e s e n t r a t e o f 26 p e rc e n t to 55 p e rc e n t and phased down to

th e in d u s tr y r a t e o v er 5 y e a r s .

F u r th e r , th e Government d e p a rte d from th e I.A .C . recom m endation t h a t th e r e should be no a s s is ta n c e f o r s u n g la s s fram es and com pleted s u n g la s s e s v a lu e d a t u n d e r $ 1. 50

fo b . I t had d e cid e d t h a t p r o te c tio n sh ould c o n tin u e to be a ffo rd e d th e lo c a l p ro d u c tio n

o f s u n g la s s e s and s u n g la ss fram es a t th e in d u s tr y r a t e . The a d d itio n a l p ro d u c tio n

volume w ill in c re a s e th ro u g h p u t and in an in te g r a te d o p e ra tio n t h i s w i l l a s s i s t th e

v i a b i l i t y o f ophthalm ic fram e m a n u fa ctu re. A cco rd in g ly , d u tie s on th e se item s would

a ls o be r a i s e d to 55 p e rc e n t and phased down i n th e same way a s f o r ophthalm ic fram es.

The e f f e c tiv e n e s s o f b o th th e s e m easures would be w atched c lo s e ly by th e Government d u rin g th e p h a sin g p e rio d .

The d e t a i l e d s ta te m e n t o f th e Customs T a r i f f changes a r i s i n g from th e G overnm ent's

d e c is io n w ill be is s u e d by th e Bureau o f Customs when arran g em en ts to im plem ent them have been f i n a l i s e d .

CANBERRA A . C . T .

25 May 1976