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Wednesday, 30 October 1974
Page: 2114

Senator DRAKE-BROCKMAN - I direct a question to the Minister for Agriculture. I refer to the inquiry into the stabilisation of farmers' incomes announced yesterday by the Prime Minister. Was the Prime Minister acting on his own initiative or did the Industries Assistance Commission invite a direction that the inquiry be conducted? Will implementation of Labor rural policy be suspended until the Industries Assistance Commission makes its recommendations? When does the Minister hope that the recommendations will be placed before the Government?

Senator WRIEDT (TASMANIA) (Minister for Agriculture) -Stabilisation of farmers' incomes has been a matter not only of Government consideration but also of public debate ever since the publication of a Green Paper earlier this year. The Government, as I have stated on many occasions, has been considering those aspects of the Green Paper which include income stabilisation. To my knowledge there was no invitation or suggestion by the Commission to refer income stabilisation. It was done as a result of the consideration which the Government has been giving to these matters over the past few months. We realise that referring the matter to the Commission is the most effective way of drawing up the various methods by which an income stabilisation scheme could be implemented.

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