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Tuesday, 19 May 1970

Mr McEWEN (MURRAY, VICTORIA) (Deputy Prime Minister) - Under the legislation passed by the Parliament for the provision and disbursement of funds in connection with research and development activities, the authority for decision is vested in a board which is independent of the Department of Trade and Industry. The legislation clearly sets down in, I think, 2 broad definitions the criteria which will be taken into account. The board operates independently. Its decisions are not subject to the concurrence of myself as the administering Minister but are reported, 1 think, at the end of the year to the Parliament.

I have no first hand knowledge of this. I understand from something I have read in a newspaper that the brewery concerned asserts that it has, through its research, discovered certain new processes in respect of hop extract and that the product is now being sold around the world and negotiations. 1 think, are taking place for the issue of licences for the employment of this process in other countries. This generally would be a result in conformity with part of the objectives of the research and development grants. But I suggest to the hon ourable member who is interested on behalf of his own hop growers that if he were to put the question on the notice paper I. would give him as full and as prompt an answer as 1 can.

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