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Tuesday, 23 September 2008
Page: 29

Senator ABETZ (9:25 PM) —I agree with Senator Fielding that we should go to a vote on this, but I asked whether an arrangement or understanding had been reached in relation to the regulations and his answer was that he was willing to take the government at face value in relation to that. Well, hello, I do not know what the face told him at the time and what the value of the face was. Can we have any indication as to what the government said they might contemplate when drafting the regulations? I say to Senator Fielding that if a costing was provided to him of $40 million, I have got a very funny feeling that the regulations will not be getting him any more exemptions for vans and other tourism vehicles, whereas if you were given a bigger figure I may have believed that when the regulations were drafted vans and other vehicles might in fact be exempted and, who knows, even potentially Australian made cars. But we would hate, I am sure, to see them being given any advantage or support in this legislation. We have studiously been avoiding any support of the Australian motor vehicle industry by the particularity of the amendments, which I personally find very disappointing. I think we are entitled to know what the expectation of Senator Fielding is or what the government intends in relation to these regulations, because that will give us an indication as to what the cost might be to the revenue.