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Thursday, 14 June 1928

Mr COOK (Indi) .- I desire to refer to the sum of £75,000 set down for advances of passage money, landing money, and medical fees of assisted migrants. Unlike many honorable members, I believe that Australia is capable of absorbing many thousands of migrants ; but they should be of the right type. I trust that the greatest precautions will be taken to ensure that only suitable migrants are permitted to enter this country. We cannot have too many migrants of the right kind. I have seen on farms in my district numbers of lads who have come here from the Old Country and are a distinct credit, to their families, and the countries of their origin ' and adoption. The more such fine fellows we can get, the better it will be for Australia, and we shall have less ground for complaint about the influx of foreigners and person.* of unsound health.

The sum of £10,000 is provided under the heading "Loan to the Territory of New Guinea for works." If the country could afford it, that amount could be doubled with advantage. It is a selfsupporting portion of the Empire. When we take into consideration the fact that these territories -are twice the size of Victoria, we gain some idea of their importance. Victoria is approximately 88,000 square miles in area, while New Guinea is 91,000 square miles, and Papua 90,000 square miles. Already a great deal of work has been accomplished, but more money needs to be spent on the construction of roads, bridges and wharfs.

We should be wise to give more encouragement to the development of aviation, which has done a great deal towards relieving the hard lot of those who have to pass their lives in the more distant parts of Australia. A great deal has been done in this direction by the air services of Western Australia, and the number of accidents has not been proportionately greater than on the railways.

The vote for the Postal Department is a large one, but an even greater sum could be spent profitably in the extension of telephone services. Much money' has been spent in this work during the last five years, but it has all been revenueproducing. If the department were to canvass for telephone subscribers, many more could be obtained, and the revenue correspondingly increased. In my electorate the construction of many lines is held up for want of money. If they could be built, they would pay for themselves from the beginning. Improved communications have done much to make life worth living in country districts.

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