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Saturday, 18 December 1993
Page: 5109


Senator GARETH EVANS (Minister for Foreign Affairs) (11.27 a.m.) —That is a matter for the states. We are not able to do that as a matter of constitutional capacity. The states have to do that themselves. The scheme of the legislation is that the Commonwealth does what it can do in areas within its own jurisdiction and then makes it possible for the states to do what is within their own jurisdiction. That is how the bill is constructed. We can only go a certain distance and that is why this is confined in this way.  We want the states to act in this way to validate these acts to create the same degree of certainty. That is the point of the kind of legislation that has already been introduced or foreshadowed in Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria. I hope that is clear. If it is not, I am happy to try to clarify the matter further.