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Monday, 24 September 1906

Senator McGREGOR (South Australia) . - I do not propose to press this request; but I do not think I should withdraw it in order to carry out what Senator Guthrie seems to desire. I point out what the effect will be if the request is defeated, as I am certain it will be. According to what we have already done, any manufacturer of scents and toilet preparations from Australian-grown ingredients will have to pay 10s. per gallon on the spirits he uses. Under the requested amendment, if he made them of imported ingredients, or of a mixture of Australian and imported ingredients, he would have to pay 15s. per gallon, or an Excise duty beyond 10s. per gallon in proportion to the percentage of foreign ingredients used. If we leave the schedule as it is, the manufacturer who makes scent from imported ingredients or a mixture of imported and Australian ingredients, will get the spirits he requires under the n.e.i. provision with an Excise duty of 13s. Will that difference be sufficient to induce the manufacturers of scent and toilet preparations to encourage the growth of the requisite ingredients in Australia? I am unable to say, but I understand the object of the request put into my hands to be to encourage the growth and production in Australia of all the ingredients required in the manufacture of scent. Whether the honorable senator is going to vote for that or not I cannot say. I have carried out my promise to Senator Best, and if the amendment is lost 13s. will be the highest duty charged for spirit.

Request negatived.

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