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Monday, 2 December 1985
Page: 2643

Senator COLLARD —My question is addressed to the Minister for Industry, Technology and Commerce. I refer to reports that transport companies have told the Government that the Transport Workers Union of Australia claim for a $12 a week superannuation claim, a claim which the union demands must be accepted within the next fortnight or industrial action will follow, amounts to a de facto pay rise of 4.2 per cent. Does the Minister agree that this claim exceeds the Government-Australian Council of Trade Unions agreement which permits only a 3 per cent productivity pay rise? What action is the Government taking to protect the transport industry from this threat of industrial action over a matter which probably cannot be properly resolved until the Australian Conciliation and Arbitration Commission productivity hearing next year?

Senator BUTTON —I am unable to say what is the basis of the calculation and whether it represents the equivalent of a 4 per cent pay increase. In the absence of any basis for the calculation, I am not prepared to accept Senator Collard's word for it. It is true that the quantum of superannuation claims will be dependent on the case to be brought in the Conciliation and Arbitration Commission in the second half of next year. To that extent it is not appropriate to claim or estimate quantum at this stage.

I will refer the other aspects of the question in regard to allegations of differences between the Transport Workers Union and others to the Minister for Employment and Industrial Relations and obtain an early answer.