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Thursday, 20 April 1972
Page: 1859

Mr JACOBI (HAWKER, SOUTH AUSTRALIA) - I direct a question to the Minister for Customs and Excise. Is the Minister aware that last October Japan dumped into the United States 6,300 tons of polyester fibre? Because of savage quotas imposed by the United States Government this was reduced to 96 tons last December. Is it a fact that Japanese producers during that period and since have redirected part of their surplus to this country? Has the Minister's attention been drawn to recent reports in the United Kingdom claiming that Australia is well known as a soft market for overseas fibre producers, which is a polite way of saying that this Government is not taking the necessary action to protect the Australian textile industry? Will the Minister take positive action to protect the Australian textile industry against the dumping tactics of overseas countries?

Mr CHIPP - It is refreshing to have criticism levelled at my Department for not taking appropriate action on dumping. Normally the criticism comes the other way - that my Department is too active on this matter. The question of dumping of textiles in Australia is one which constantly exercises the attention of officers of my Department and the honourable member would know the procedures that are followed. There is a prima facie examination of the complaint by my Department if a complaint is lodged. If goods are being imported into Australia at a price lower than the current domestic price in the exporting country one of two things happens - cash securities are levied forthwith or the matter is immediately referred to the Tariff Board. As to the particular matter raised by the honourable gentleman, I do not have the current situation at my fingertips. I do know that some investigations have been carried out into this matter but I will look into the matter and let the honourable gentleman know the position.

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