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Tuesday, 8 November 1938

Mr FRANCIS (Moreton) .- The proposal of the honorable member for Fawkner (Mr. Holt) is merely a safeguard. It will not exclude any British company. His amendment reads -

That at the end of sub-clause (].) the following words be added: - " but no such contract for insurance shall he made by the board without the approval of the Minister 'with a person or company not carrying on the business of insurance in the Commonwealth on its own account or with a person or company which in tlie Commonwealth merely grants cover or receives premiums, proposals or requests for insurance business on behalf of or for transmission to any company person or association of persons outside the Commonwealth ".

The honorable member for Richmond (Mr. Anthony) said that if the amendment were carried British companies would be excluded, but that is not so. Insurance could still be effected with cither Australian or British companies approved by the Minister. All that is asked for is that if the board, for any reason whatever, desires to take out an insurance policy with a company other than one operating in Australia, the approval of the Minister must first be obtained. Many British insurance companies are operating in Australia. It is desirable to give every possible encouragement to insurance companies functioning in Australia, for they give employment in this country and assist Australia's finances. Overseas companies do not employ Australians, nor do many of them invest money in this country. There is no prohibition whatever in the proposal; it is merely a safeguard. Should special circumstances exist, no difficulty would be experienced in obtaining the approval of the Minister to effect the insurance with a company outside Australia. I hope that the amendment will be earned.

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