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Friday, 29 November 1912

Senator RAE (New South Wales) - - If Senator Millen has properly interpreted the amendment, it is not clear to me that it will have the effect desired. Why should any foreign-going ship be able to carry on goods from a port at which they have been discharged by another foreigngoing ship ? The matter dealt with by the Minister was the over-carriage of cargo, and in most cases that would be represented by a package or two. If my luggage is over-carried, I have to take my chance of getting it back, and why should not the other fellow have to do the same?

Senator Millen - The honorable senator would probably resent a law which would add to the difficulties of getting his luggage back.

Senator RAE - Not if there were compensations. I take it that no ship would over-carry hundreds of tons of cargo, but merely packages of cargo that were overlooked.

Senator Vardon - Half-a-dozen bales or cases of goods are sometimes over-carried.

Senator RAE - In such cases the shipping companies would be responsible for bringing the goods back to their port of destination without any additional charge to the importer. That would involve merely an extra charge on the ship-owner.

Senator Vardon - The importer might have to wait until the ship is returning.

Senator RAE - I think we can assume that the importer would not tolerate such treatment as that, and certainly no shipping firm would be allowed to retain its trade if it treated its clients in that way. The probability is that advantage would be taken of the first vessel leaving the port to which the cargo was over-carried to have it returned to the port of destination. It. is difficult to understand what the effect of the amendment will be, but if Senator Millen's reading of it be correct, it will allow a good deal more to be done than apparently is contemplated by the Minister.

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