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Tuesday, 31 March 1987
Page: 1760

Mr HUNT —Madam Speaker, I wish to make a personal explanation.

Madam SPEAKER —Does the honourable member claim to have been misrepresented?

Mr HUNT —I do, Madam Speaker.

Madam SPEAKER —The honourable member may proceed.

Mr HUNT —The Treasurer (Mr Keating), in answer to a question, claimed that the cost of the policy commitment instanced by the Deputy Leader of the National Party to abandon fuel excise would be such and such. He was misquoting me from a speech I made over the weekend. I would like to demonstrate the point of misrepresentation by reading from the speech I delivered. I stated:

Most of our competing nations have not intercepted the falls in world oil prices by raking off increased revenue and have passed the benefit on to their consumers and industry. The Industries Assistance Commission highlighted the idiocy of taxing fuel to the extent we do in its report on petroleum products. For example, the National Farmers Federation recently made the point that if fuel excise was dropped totally inflation would be reduced by 5 to 6 per cent . . . It would require an expenditure cut of $5.6 billion to compensate for the loss of revenue.

I was instancing the idea of the National Farmers Federation.