Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
 Download Full Day's HansardDownload Full Day's Hansard    View Or Save XMLView/Save XML

Previous Fragment    Next Fragment
Thursday, 29 October 1931

Mr GREGORY (Swan) .- I have here some figures comparing our position in 1911 with that of last year. In 1911, our national debt was £273,000,000 ; last year, it was £1,100,000,000. Our taxation receipts in 1911 amounted to £18,000,000 ; last year, they totalled £91,000,000. The interest on our public debt in 1911 amounted to £9,600,000; last year it totalled £55,000,000. Our production in 3911 was valued at £189,000,000; last year its value was £391,000,000, and it will be less this year. Those figures show how essential it is that our export trade shall be built up and everything possible done to increase production. For many years, manufacturers have been mollycoddled, and granted all sorts of concessions. They have not been called upon to meet competition from manufacturers overseas, whereas the primary producers have been given no consideration. It is deplorable that, in a country greatly in need of population, areas which have been devoted to wheat-growing should now be used as pasturage for sheep. There are still available - particularly inWestern Australia - large areas of land suitable for wheat-growers, on which many thousands of persons could be settled if only wheatgrowing were aprofitable undertaking. I want to assist to build up this country, and, therefore, I grieve when I see the farmers exploited. The people of Western Australia want to be released from bondage, so that they can make better use of their State. I should have preferred a hill along the lines of a scheme prepared by Mr. Teesdale, an expert in Western Australia, which provided for a bounty on all wheat exported. The export trade is vital to Australia, and with a bounty on export the local price would have been increased giving the producer a more reasonable price for his product. Nevertheless, I am prepared to accept this bill, because I know that the Minister has done the best he could in the circumstances. I believe that the bill will grant some relief to those in need, and, therefore, I shall support the second reading.

Suggest corrections