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Wednesday, 1 October 1958

Mr CAIRNS (YARRA, VICTORIA) - I ask the Prime Minister, in his capacity as acting Treasurer: Is it a fact that, in 1949, £75,000,000, or 3.8 per cent, of the total, of Commonwealth and State debts was held by Australian governments, whereas, in 1957, £654,000,000, or 21 per cent, of the total, was held by them? Is it further a fact that 17 per cent, of the amount of this debt held by governments was held by the Commonwealth Government in 1949, and that this had increased to 85 per cent, in 1957? Does the right honorable gentleman approve of the financial principles under which governments, and particularly the one that he leads, owe to themselves an increasing amount of the money that they imagined they were borrowing from elsewhere?

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