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Wednesday, 14 November 2018
Page: 8157

Senator CHISHOLM (Queensland) (15:58): I seek leave to make a short statement.

The PRESIDENT: Leave is granted for one minute.

Senator CHISHOLM: Labor is sympathetic with the sentiment behind this motion but does not support it as originally drafted or as amended. Labor notes that the ABC charter sets out international broadcasting as a function of the ABC and that the ABC Act prescribes the providers of Commonwealth funded international broadcasting services. Labor notes that the Liberal government's short-sighted cuts to the ABC and the dismantling of the Australia Network have undermined both the ABC and Australia's presence in the region. Labor notes that the government's 'soft power' review and the review of Australian broadcasting services in the Asia-Pacific are yet to conclude. Labor's policy positions on international broadcasting and the Pacific will be considered through Labor's usual caucus process.