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Wednesday, 28 March 1984
Page: 785


Senator CHANEY —I refer the Minister for Resources and Energy to an article which appeared in today's Australian about a poor response from oil companies for off-shore permits which were released for bidding last year. Are the facts presented in the article accurate? If so, is this not another indication that the Government's essentially anti-incentive policies, particularly its intention to impose a resource rent tax on the oil industry, are having a seriously depressing impact on the oil exploration industry?


Senator WALSH —It would be discourteous of me to release at this stage the results of the applications for exploration permits before I have notified the two State Ministers concerned. I will do that within the next few days and make a public announcement next week. I can however say that the conclusion which Senator Chaney has reached is at the best highly questionable because all of these areas had previously been released and been relinquished.