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Thursday, 15 August 1974
Page: 1038

Senator Greenwood asked the Minister representing the Prime Minister, upon notice:

(   1 ) Did the Prime Minister and the Minister for Overseas Trade jointly state on 18 July 1973 that the Government was determined that import prices should respond to the 25 per cent tariff reduction.

(2)   Have import prices responded to the tariff reduction; if so, in what way did they respond.

(3)   Did the response take place in the way the Government determined.

(4)   What action did the Government take to ensure that import prices responded to the tariff reduction.

Senator Murphy - The Prime Minister has provided the following information for answer to the honourable senator's question:

(   1 ) Yes. See answer to question No. 7.

(2)   The Department of Customs and Excise has carried out research on the effects of the 25 per cent tariff reduction and other factors on the landed costs of certain imported goods. These exercises have demonstrated that, in the main, these costs have reflected the 25 percent tariff cut.

(3)   and (4) There is evidence that retail prices have not fully reflected the reduction in landed costs. Under the Prices Justification Bill now before Parliament the Prices Justification Tribunal will have power to take more extensive and effective action in this area.

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