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Wednesday, 17 August 1921

Senator DE LARGIE - I do not think the Government could1 find the funds necessary to permit of the general application of the. principle, but as we have gone a certain distance along this road I fail to see why we should not" go still further. I would postpone indefinitely the coming into operation of these deferred duties, an*d would bring them into operation only when it was demonstrated that the bounty system had failed. Let us make this experiment in connexion with the sub-item immediately before us. Both schools of fiscal thought have often suggested: that it is the best way of establishing new industries. If the local market were swamped by imports of the cheaper products- of other countries, we should be able to protect, the industry from such dumping by means of the Customs Tariff (Industries. Preservation)'

Bill. If the Parliament is- sincere in the. desire to establish this industry on a firm basis, it can demonstrate its. sincerity by applying the bounty system to it, and that, together with anti-dumping legislation, should prove effective. I see but. little prospect of any dumping taking place. The world-wide changes brought, about by the. war make dumping practically impossible. That being sO, I think we have an excellent opportunity to experiment in the way I have suggested. We can do' so feeling sure that no. harm! will result to those who have put their capital into the industry, inasmuch as we shall be able to step in at any moment and protect them if undue advantage is taken of the free market. I shall therefore support Senator Drake-Brockman's request. It is time that we . resorted to some new . means of establishing industries. We are all anxious, I am sure, to increase the opportunities of employment for Austraiian workmen. The bounty system has received the support of the Free Trade section, and I am satisfied that the Protectionist element in the community will indorse its application" in this case. My experience in this Chamber leads me to the- conclusion that the longer protective duties are imposed, the greater is the demand for increases. Rightly or wrongly, that conclusion has been forced upon me as the result of my experience as a senator. Here we have an opportunity to institute a new means of establishing industries. I hope that the Committee will avail themselves of it by agreeing to Senator- Drake-Brockman's proposition. We can then continue the application of the bounty system to this industry until we are satisfied that it is a failure." My view is that a good deal of success will attend its application, and I hope that this experiment will be made.

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