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AUSTRALIAN NATIONAL LINE--ORDER FOR PRODUCTION OF DOCUMENTS--FINANCE AND
PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION REFERENCES COMMITTEE--REFERENCE

Senator Gibson, by leave, moved--That:

(a) the Senate reaffirms its resolution of 22 September 1994 in

relation to paragraph (2)(c) of that resolution, that there be

laid on the table, as soon as practicable, a report by the

Auditor-General which takes into account as far as necessary the

material described in paragraph (1)(b) of that resolution and

any other information which the Auditor-General requires and is

authorised or empowered to obtain, and addresses the following

matters:

any other matters which the Auditor-General believes are relevant to

the matters referred to in paragraphs (2)(a) and (2)(b) of that

resolution;

(b) in preparing the report referred to in paragraph (a) the

Auditor-General:

(i) be aware of the following issues and questions:

(A) whether public officials (elected or unelected)

associated with the proposed disposal of the Australian

National Line (ANL) have acted with prudence,

discretion, integrity and propriety,

(B) whether the actions of the Department of Transport, the

Department of Finance (Asset Sales Task Force) and the

boards of ANL, as individual organisations and

collectively, have been effective in serving the

taxpayers' best interests,

(C) what was the status of the Price Waterhouse-Salomon

Brothers report in the sale process, and was there any

reason for preferring the Price Waterhouse-Salomon

Brothers valuation to other valuations,

(D) whether the minister behaved with prudence, discretion,

integrity and propriety by publishing the Price

Waterhouse-Salomon Brothers report and by making the

comments he did when publishing the report,

(E) whether the disposal of Australian Stevedores to Jamison

Equity, against the advice of both the old and new ANL

boards, was justified, whether the sale price was

maximised, and whether the financing arrangements were

acceptable on legal and commercial grounds, and

(F) the circumstances leading up to the agreement with the

Maritime Union of Australia, the nature of the agreement

including financial arrangements, and whether the

agreement was in the best interests of the Commonwealth,

and

(ii) be prepared to give evidence to a Senate committee, in so

far as the Auditor-General is able, on these issues and

questions and other matters arising as a result of the

report to be prepared under paragraph (a); and

(c) the following matters be referred to the Finance and Public

Administration References Committee, for inquiry and report on

or before 30 March 1995, or as soon as practicable, but not

before taking into account the report of the Auditor-General to

be prepared under paragraph (a) of this resolution:

Whether the proposed sale of ANL has been conducted with the

prudence, discretion, integrity, skill and propriety

necessary:

(i) to protect the value of ANL and its assets,

(ii) to realise the maximum price for ANL and its assets,

and

(iii) to avoid prejudice to the interests of the

Commonwealth, including the potential prejudice to

the environment and the Australian shipping industry

arising from the impact of increasing dependence on

sub-standard and flag-of-convenience shipping.

Debate ensued.

Question put.

The Senate divided--

AYES, 32

Abetz Boswell Brownhill Calvert Campbell Chamarette Chapman Crichton-Browne Ellison Ferguson Gibson Harradine Hill Kemp Knowles Macdonald, Ian Macdonald, Sandy MacGibbon McGauran Margetts Minchin Newman Panizza Parer Patterson Reid (Teller) Short Tambling Teague Troeth Watson Woods

NOES, 30

Beahan Bell Bolkus Bourne Carr Childs Coates Collins Cooney Crowley Denman Devereux Evans, Christopher Evans, Gareth Faulkner Forshaw Jones (Teller) Kernot Lees McKiernan Murphy Neal Ray Reynolds Schacht Sherry Spindler West Woodley Zakharov

Question agreed to.