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Thursday, 28 August 1980
Page: 893


Mr GARLAND (Curtin) (Minister for Business and Consumer Affairs) - I move:

Excise Tariff Proposals No. 3 ( 1 980) .

Excise Tariff Proposals No. 3 (1980), which I have just tabled, formally place before Parliament alterations to the excise tariff introduced during the winter recess by authority of gazette notices Nos. 1 and 2 (1980) under Section 160B of the Excise Act. The Proposals increases the excise duty on stabilised crude petroleum oil from $140.1 1 to $157.21 per kilolitre operating on and from 1 July 1980. This alteration followed determination, by the Minister for National Development and Energy (Senator Carrick), of new import parity prices from 1 July 1980, in accordance with the Government's decision that all Australian produced crude oil should be priced to refineries at import parity levels.

The choice facing the community is between paying realistic prices for petroleum products, or not having access to adequate supplies and being wasteful in its use. The Government's crude oil pricing policy has the dual role of reducing the demand for petroleum products in Australia and accelerating the development of indigenous energy reserves.

Maintenance of the import parity pricing policy is fundamental to the Government's energy policy and to maintaining an adequate supply of liquid fuels over the long term. The supply of oil available at lower prices would not be as great as the supply of oil available at market prices. Similarly, low oil prices would increase consumption and would fail to encourage conservation measures. The Proposals also increases the excise duty on naturally occurring liquefied petroleum gas from $41 .65 per kilolitre to $43.48 per kilolitre operating on and from 1 July 1980. This change followed new average wholesale prices for naturally occuring LPG being set by the Minister for National Development and Energy in accordance with Government policy.

Following the increase in the price of Saudi Arabian light marker crude, the maximum wholesale price for domestic sales of naturally occurring liquid petroleum gas has been increased in accordance with the policy announced in April and is now $227.63 per tonne. This price also applies to ex-refinery LPG. The Government's policy has the effect of relating the domestic LPG price to the movement in overseas prices. I commend the proposals.







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