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Tuesday, 8 May 1973
Page: 1753

Mr McVEIGH (DARLING DOWNS, QUEENSLAND) - I direct my question to the Prime Minister. As a preamble I refer to a question asked of him by my colleague the honourable member for Murray on 13th March 1973, in reply to which the Prime Minister said that a Cabinet decision on the matter referred to by my colleague could be expected within a week. When will the Government announce its policy as contained in the election policy booklet "It's Time - Rural' of long term low interest loans for farmers? If it has no intention of so doing, will the Prime Minister publicly state that the election Press statement of 2nd November 1972 by the honourable member for Riverina of the Labor Government's policy of $500m to be lent at 3 per cent interest was, as the Minister for Health stated in answer to a previous question, a cheap pre-election political trick?

Mr SPEAKER -Order! The honourable gentleman is giving information. Will he please ask his question.

Mr McVEIGH - I accept your ruling, Mr Speaker. If the Labor Government intends to advance this money, will the Prime Minister say when that is to be done, bearing in mind that he stated in answer to a question asked by my colleague on 13th March-

Mr SPEAKER -Order! I ask the honourable gentleman to complete his question.

Mr McVEIGH - Will the Prime Minister state when such an announcement can be expected?

Mr WHITLAM - The question of long term rural finance is still before the Cabinet. It has not been determined as quickly as I had hoped because, as honourable members will know, the Minister for Primary Industry has had to attend overseas conferences.

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