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Friday, 5 April 1946


Mr CHIFLEY - I have read the report referred to, and have taken note of the resolution dealing with prices control and inflation. The very grave danger of inflation when a large amount of money is available in a liquid form in the community, and the supply of goods is not adequate to meet the demands for them, is apparent to every person who has given any thought to the matter. As honorable members know, it has been absolutely necessary to exercise control in many fields other than those relating to prices. These controls have caused some irritation. Many factors are involved before an article reaches the consumer for sale, and the matter of price has to be considered. If at these earlier stages, costs were increased, inevitably the article could notbe sold except at an inflated price. The Government is fully alive to the situation. Even though there has been a good deal of criticism of some of the controls that have been imposed, the Government, in the interests of the community generally, will weigh every factor carefully before relaxing those which this Parliament has the power to maintain, and which, in its opinion, are absolutely essential for the good of the country. In conjunction with the Minister for External Affairs, I shall examine the suggestion of the honorable member for the ratification of conventions of the International Labour Conference, and shall then let the honorable member know what are the Government's views.







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