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Thursday, 27 September 1973
Page: 1604

Mr INNES (MELBOURNE, VICTORIA) - Has the Minister for Immigration seen reports based on a factual answer which he gave to a question on notice in relation to migration inquiries in the United States of America which would appear to indicate that interest in Australia by people in the United States has diminished? Is this the position or has there been some misreading of the statistics made available?

Mr GRASSBY (RIVERINA, NEW SOUTH WALES) (Minister for Immigration) - It is true that towards the end of last year there was- a greatly reduced interest in Australia in the United States of America. As a matter of .fact in December the inquiries dropped to the lowest level for a long time. The inquiries for that month of December last were running at only about 3,000 and that was a very low number of inquiries. I am pleased to say that by June of this year the interest had picked up considerably and the inquiries to .the various officers throughout the United States were at a level of 5,000. When I was there a few weeks ago I must say that I found in the United States literally a boom of interest in Australia. In many locations people who previously did not know where Australia was now know where it is and instead of being surprised to hear something of this country they now look for the information. As a matter of fact Australians in the United States, I would say, at this particular time are walking taller than they have ever walked before. I am particularly pleased because the international image of Australia seems to me to be the best that it has been in my generation.

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