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Wednesday, 3 June 1970

Mr ANTHONY (Richmond) (Minister for Primary industry) (3:17 AM) - in reply - I shall take about I minute to answer 2 matters. One was raised by the honourable member for Dawson (Dr Patterson) and the other was raised by the honourable member for Angas (Mr Giles). Firstly, I want to thank the House for the support that it has given to the Bill. I have had a little difficulty in explaining it and selling it to the States for a period of 2t years. At last Western Australia has accepted it. Tasmania has informed us that it will accept it. 1 hope to be able to negotiate with other States to overcome their problems. The honourable member for Angas referred to the problem of the equalisation of milk and manufacturing products within the region of Adelaide. I can understand this problem because the provisions whereby at least 50% of the income must come from milk sold at manufacturing prices would preclude these people from participating in the scheme. However, i think that consultation and negotiation between the South Australian Government and the Commonwealth might: be able to clear up this matter.

The honourable member for Dawson asked why we let imported cheese come into this country. Naturally I would bc very happy if no imported cheese came into the country, thus allowing a bigger market for our own cheese. There is a standard routine for giving protection to Australian industries. The dairying industry has made an application to the Tariff Board to have a higher duty placed on the importation of such cheese. The Tariff Board has not recommended in favour of such action. We have our international trade obligations under the New Zealand-Australia Free Trade Agreement. We have an arrangement to import a certain quantity of New Zealand cheese. We must realise that principally we are an exporter of cheese. For the year 1967-68 we exported 34,000 tons of cheese and imported 5,000 tons, mainly fancy cheese. One can understand the implications that there could be if a complete embargo were placed on imported cheese. Trade is a 2-way business and people can retaliate to our detriment if the matter is not handled carefully. With those few remarks I thank honourable members for the support that they have given to this Bill.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Bill read a second time.

Message from the Governor-General recommending appropriation announced.

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