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Wednesday, 27 November 1985
Page: 2387


Senator BUTTON (Minister for Industry, Technology and Commerce)(5.48) —The project definition study is about securing appropriate technology for the Royal Australian Navy's submarines. There is a naval team working on that project definition study and that is one of its tasks. In a sense the apprehension that Senator MacGibbon has expressed is slightly premature. If he is not satisfied with the results of the project definition study then undoubtedly that will be a matter for comment at that time.

I do not think that Senator MacGibbon can have it all ways. Certainly his Party cannot have it all ways-he might not speak for his Party; a lot of the Opposition senators do not. There has been some criticism of the decision to build the six submarines in Australia. Opposition members cannot, in the Budget context, have the right of their Party leaders to chastise us about spending too much on research and development in Australia and at the same time have Senator MacGibbon make his little cracks about the meagre amount of money being spent on research and development in Australia. They cannot have it all possible ways. Insofar as the information sought by Senator MacGibbon is concerned, I have given it to him in terms of what is available at the present time.