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Monday, 5 June 1989
Page: 3368

Senator REID(9.55) —I always get worried when people such as the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (Senator Gareth Evans) start talking about equity because one is never quite sure what they mean by it. For example, is the Minister evaluating the interests of the total number of subscribers in Sydney or Melbourne against those of two or three subscribers somewhere west of the Black Stump? I rather fear that, in general, in this instance he comes down on the side of the bulk of subscribers in one place and feels that there is no reason for the small number in another place to have any consideration at all. For that reason, I come back to the wording that we have proposed as being more likely to be of assistance to people who need some support from Telecom Australia than his qualified use of the word `equity', which is not clearly defined in this instance.