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Wednesday, 11 April 1973
Page: 1367

Mr Graham asked the Treasurer, upon notice:

(1)   Has he means of assessing the impact of the recent re-valuations of the Australian currency upon the economic viability of companies manufacturing goods for export.

(2)   If so, how will the costs of these companies be affected if they have to cease exporting.

Mr Crean - The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(l)   and (2) After the revaluation of the Australian dollar, the Government established an InterDepartmental Committee to consider the question of adjustment assistance for manufacturing industries. In broad terms, the impact of the revaluation of the Australian dollar upon the export sales of companies manufacturing for export, upon their costs if their exports are diminished as a result of that revaluation, and upon their economic viability in general have been the subject of study by that Committee.

Currency Rate Changes: Effect on United Kingdom Pensioners (Question No. 230)

Mr Garland asked the Treasurer, upon notice:

What arrangements has he made for compensation or other assistance to those permanent Australian residents who are in receipt of pensions from the

United Kingdom and who have suffered so much loss as a result of the currency rate changes.

Mr Crean - The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

Pensions paid to Australian residents by overseas Governments or other institutions, whether in the United Kingdom or elsewhere, are of course liable to change in terms of their Australian dollar value if the exchange rate between the currency of the country concerned and the Australian dollar changes. Such a change may occur either because of a change in the par value of the Australian dollar, such as was made on 23rd December last; or because of a change in the par value or central rate of the foreign currency concerned such as occurred in the case of the pound sterling when it was allowed to 'float' in June 1972; or because of a change in the relative valuation of the Australian dollar and the foreign currency concerned as a result of differing consequences for those currencies of action taken in the case of other major currencies, such as the devaluation of the United States dollar in February 1973.

In these respects the effects on the remittances concerned are not different in kind from the effects on other payments due to Australian residents in foreign currencies. Thus, while the Government sympathises with those individuals whose pensions payable from overseas sources may have been reduced in terms of Australian currency as a result of exchange rate changes, it would not be appropriate for it to seek to offset by specific action such reductions. 1 should mention that, as a result of the recent exchange rate changes, some persons resident in Australia in receipt of a pension from the United Kingdom could have become eligible for an Australian Social Service pension for the first time and others could have qualified for an increased Social Services pension.

Leptospirosis in Cattle (Question No. 236)

Mr Kerin asked the Minister for Science, upon notice:

(1)   Is there any evidence of an increase In the incidence of leptospirosis in cattle.

(2)   Will he ask the CSIRO to investigate the causes of this disease and attempt to provide a solution for its control.

Mr Morrison - The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1)   There is no evidence of an increase in leptospirosis in cattle. However, the disease is perhaps diagnosed more frequently as field veterinary officers are more aware of it.

(2)   The causes of this disease are already known. Commercial vaccines are available and are considered to be effective in preventing outbreaks. Chronic carriers of leptospira respond satisfactorily to treatment ' with streptomycin.

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