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Thursday, 27 March 2003
Page: 13809

Dr EMERSON (2:49 PM) —My question is to the Minister for Industry, Tourism and Resources. Is the minister aware of media reports concerning contracts for the postwar reconstruction of Iraq going overwhelmingly to US firms? Is the minister also aware that British politicians and engineering and construction firms have complained about being excluded from bidding for USAID funded contracts? What representations has the minister made to the United States to ensure that Australian companies are not excluded from bidding for USAID funded projects in Iraq?

Mr IAN MACFARLANE (Minister for Industry, Tourism and Resources) —I am not aware of any Australian companies that have been specifically excluded in post-Iraq war work. I can assure the House that this government will take steps to ensure that Australian companies are given every opportunity to bid for these contracts. On the basis of past performance, and the expertise of Australian companies, I have every confidence that they will win contracts.