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Friday, 15 May 1942

Mr BARNARD (BASS, TASMANIA) - Has the Minister representing the Minister for Trade and Customs seen schedule A of the report of the Joint Committee on War Profits in which there is set out a list of goods that have been declared, the firms to the number of 110, controlling those goods, and a list of prosecutions under the National Security Regulations showing that 50 prosecutions have been launched successfully against firms for making excess charges for goods sold to the public? Does the Minister propose to take any further action against firms which, during the last year or two, have exploited the public in this way?

Mr BEASLEY - I cannot say, offhand, whether the Minister for Trade and Customs has considered in detail the matters raised by the honorable member. Probably he will do so in due course, but, in any case, I shall draw his attention to them. It is not possible, without an amendment of the National Security Act, to provide greater penalties than those already prescribed. The matter will be reviewed, and a reply furnished to the honorable member later.

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