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Wednesday, 7 December 1960

Mr OSBORNE (Evans) (Minister for Air) . - in reply - I appreciate the general support which the House has given to this bill, even though qualified in some cases. The honorable member for Lalor (Mr. Pollard) has suggested that the production of superphosphate generally should be subsidized by way of a bounty, but I point out to him that it has never been intended, under the sulphuric acid bounty scheme since its introduction in the early 1950's, to subsidize superphosphate. The intention was more limited. It was to encourage the production of sulphuric acid from indigenous materials at a time when it was believed that imported brimstone would become very scarce throughout the world. That state of affairs did not, in fact, come about.

The two honorable members from South Australia, the honorable member for Wakefield (Mr. Kelly) and the honorable member for Barker (Mr. Forbes) have directed attention to the position of two particular South Australian producers of sulphuric acid from indigenous materials. The Government has stated quite clearly that it recognizes its obligation to those producers of sulphuric acid from indigenous materials who incurred liabilities in responding to the Government's request to undertake the production of this material in Australia. I have listened carefully to the remarks of the two honorable members from South Australia, and I should mention here that the honorable member for Sturt (Mr. Wilson), another South Australian member of this Parliament who is interested in the problems of these two producers, is absent on dutv, but he has told me that he agrees with the views of both of his colleagues from that State, and that he identifies himself with them. I shall bring those remarks to the attention of my colleague, the Minister for Trade (Mr. McEwen), and I am ouite sure that if the twoproducers concerned will preDare a carefully documented case, the Minister will consider it.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Bill read a second time, and passed throuah its remaining stages without amendment or debate.

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