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Thursday, 23 June 1949


Mr Howse (CALARE, NEW SOUTH WALES) e asked the Minister for Commerce and Agriculture, upon notice -

1.   How much wheat has Australia exported to New Zealand, under the agreement of 1946, in each of the years since the agreement was made?

2.   What price has New Zealand paid for each bushel?

3.   What was the world price for a bushel of wheat in each of the years since the agreement was made?

4.   How much money haB the Government advanced out of Consolidated Revenue to the Australian Wheat Board to avoid losses to Australian wheat-farmers under this agreement?

5.   In view of pending trade talks between the two countries, due to open in June or July, will the Government exercise the strictest caution to avoid a repetition of an agreement such as the Australian-New Zealand wheat pact?


Mr Pollard - The answers to the honorable member's questions are as follows : -

1.   1946, 2,794,000; 1947, 5,446,000; 1948, 6,870.000; 1949 (to 20th May, 1949), 2,435,000.

2.   Nine shillings and sixpence f.o.b. a bushel, bulk basis, for the first 4,500,000 bushels; and after that 5s. 9d. f.o.b. a bushel, bulk basis, for shipments to 19th January, 1948; 6s. 4d. f.o.b. a bushel, bulk basis, for shipments from 19th January, 1948, and 6s. 9d. f.o.b. a bushel, bulk basis, for shipments from 1st December, 1948.

3.   The Australian Wheat Board's export price, which is taken as the Australian equivalent of world prices varied. In 1946, it ranged from 9s. 6d. a bushel, bulk to 16s. a bushel; 1947, 16s. to 19s. 6d.; 1948, 20s. 6d. to 15s. 6d.; 1949, to 1st June, 15s. 6d. to 14s.

4.   £6,938,212 to 20th May, 1949.

5.   The Government will have full regard to the interests of Australia in any discussions with New Zealand on economic matters.


Mr Archie Cameron n asked the Minister for Commerce and Agriculture, upon notice -

Under the New Zealand Wheat Agreement -

(a)   what number of bushels did the Commonwealth contract to supply; (b) what was (i) the original and (ii) the amended price of delivery; (c) what is the loss to the taxpayer to date: (d) how many bushels are yet to be delivered; and (e) what is the estimated final loss on the contract?


Mr Pollard - The answers to the honorable member's questions are as follows : -

(a)   Eighteen million bushels.

(b)   (i) Nine shillings and sixpence a bushel bulk basis, f.o.b. for the first 4,500,000 bushels; and 5s. 9d. a bushel, bulk, for the remainder, (ii) The price became6s. 4d. f.o.b. a bushel, bulk basis, on 19th January, 1948, and 6s.9d. f.o.b. a bushel, bulk basis on 1st December, 1948.

(c)   £6,938.212 to the 20th May, 1949.

(d)   455,000 bushels at the 20th May, 1949.

(c)   £7,100,000.







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