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Wednesday, 13 April 1904

Mr.R. EDWARDS asked the PostmasterGeneral, upon notice - '

1.   In view of the fact that the present contract for carrying mails between Australia and Great Britain will terminate in January, what action does he propose to take in order to secure the prompt and regular exchange of mails between the Commonwealth and Great Britain after the expiration of the present contract?

2.   On what basis did he make his calculations of the cost of transmitting mail matter to England at poundage rates?

3.   Will he give the House the details of these calculations ?

Mr. DEAKIN__On behalf of my honorable colleague, I have to say-

1.   In order to secure the prompt and regular exchange of mails between the Commonwealth . and Great Britain after the expiration of the present contract, the Postmaster-General proposes to favorably consider any proposals that may be made for a suitable contract, to alternate with, the contract entered into by the Government of Great Britain, for a continuance of the existing fortnightly service ait present being carried out by the P. and O. Company ; or failing such a proposal, to make, as the only alternative, the best arrangement possible for the carriage of the mails by suitable steamers leaving Australia, in accordance with the provisions of the Postal Union and the power given by the Post and Telegraph Act.

2.   On the basis of statements of the actual weight of the articles contained in mails from Australia during the quarter which ended on the 30th November, 1903, and of the rates prescribed by the Postal Union Convention for sea transit on steamers under contract, and also for territorial transit through Italy and France by both ordinary and special trains.

3.   Yes, when the subject is ripe for discussion.







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