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Thursday, 31 October 1974
Page: 2190

Senator RAE (TASMANIA) - My question is directed to the Minister for Agriculture. I refer to earlier answers regarding the visit to Australia of the Prime Minister of Japan and also to the various questions which I have asked previously about negotiations for the entry of Tasmanian fruit into the Japanese market. In view of the extremely serious state of the fruit industry in Tasmania and the importance of opening up this new market for Tasmanian fruit, I ask the Minister whether the opportunity will be taken to engage in further talks so as to further press the matter of the entry of Tasmanian fruit into Japan.

Senator WRIEDT -I doubt whether there will be discussions with the Japanese Prime Minister on this specific matter on this occasion. As I have said in answering questions previously, the discussions which were initiated last October in relation to the entry of Australian apples into Japan were continued and I think, at least for the moment, resolved in August of this year when the Japanese made it quite clear that they would not allow the importation of Australian apples into that country until such time as they were sure of the elimination of codling moth. At this stage we have not reached the health standards that the Japanese require. It is quite understandable that they will protect their own industries from disease in exactly the same way as we do. We have rigid laws in relation to the imports of livestock, fruit or other products where we feel that our industries might suffer as a result of the introduction of disease. I am not hopeful of any fresh developments in relation to exports to Japan of apples for the 1 975 season. We can only continue to research, explore and improve the methods that we already have for the elimination of the sons of diseases that currently prevent our fruit from being exported to that country.

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