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Wednesday, 16 August 1972
Page: 48

Senator MCAULIFFE (QUEENSLAND) - I address my question to the Minister representing the Minister for Primary Industry. Is it a fact that Americans are buying professional kangaroo shooters' licences in Australia? Is it also a fact that salted kangaroo skins are being exported in quantity direct to the United States of America and that this practice has resulted in economic hardship to Australian tanneries and to the Australian souvenir industry? Is it a fact also that the United States has prohibited the killing of most of its furred animals and that the most plentiful source of supply of fur in the world today is the kangaroo? Will the Minister investigate these claims, more particularly as the only government revenue received from the United States trading in skins is the shooter's licence fee? Will the Minister also confer with his colleague, the Minister for Immigration, to examine closely applications for entry to Australia from overseas people applying for professional shooters' licences to ensure that they have no connection with organised criminal activity in the United States of America?

Senator DRAKE-BROCKMAN (WESTERN AUSTRALIA) (Minister for Air) - I think the honourable senator will agree with me when I say that the kangaroo is one of the most popular of Australian native animals. Songs have been dedicated to the kangaroo and symbols have been devised to represent it. Perhaps it is the best loved of our animals. Whilst I am aware that some millions of pounds of kangaroo meat are exported, I am not aware that the facts are as the honourable senator has stated them. However, I will seek information for him from the Minister for Primary Industry, and I shall also make inquiries through the Minister for Immigration on his behalf.

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