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Friday, 10 December 1965

Mr Collard (KALGOORLIE, WESTERN AUSTRALIA) d asked the Minister representing the Minister for Customs and Excise, upon notice -

1.   Has a survey been carried out to ascertain whether the subsidy on the wholesale price of petroleum products has been passed on to consumers?

2.   If so, what was the finding?

3.   If a survey has not yet been made is it intended that one will be undertaken?

4.   If it is not intended to institute a survey does this mean that the Government considers a survey is not necessary?

The Minister for Customs and Excise has supplied the following information -

1.   Since the commencement of the petroleum products subsidisation scheme, checks have been made to determine whether the benefit of subsidy has been passed on through wholesale outlets. In addition a continuing survey is being carried out at selected retail outlets throughout the Commonwealth by officers of the Department of Customs and Excise to ascertain whether consumers were receiving the full benefits.

2.   In every instance the check revealed that oil companies and agents have passed on the subsidy through their wholesale selling prices. Generally speaking the survey of retail prices has dearly indicated that consumers are receiving the benefits of the subsidies to which they are entitled, although in isolated instances some pricing anomalies have come to light. It must be appreciated that in a scheme of this magnitude where eligible products are sold through many thousands of outlets throughout Australia, it is impossible to make an all embracing examination. Thus I would welcome information regarding specific localities at which it is suspected that the full benefits are not being passed on to consumers.

3.   Not applicable.

4.   Not applicable.

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