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Thursday, 7 August 1930

Senator BARNES (Victoria) (Honorary Minister) (3:34 AM) . - I move -

That the bill be now read a second time. '

The Canned Fruits Export Control Act, which was brought into operation in 1926, provided for the establishment of the Canned Fruits Control Board to organize the overseas marketing of canned apricots, peaches, and pears. The board as it is at present constituted consists of three members - one appointed by the Governor-General as the representative of the Commonwealth Government, one elected to represent co-operative and State controlled canneries, and the third elected to represent proprietary and privately-owned canneries. As the act now stands, the basis of voting for any election held under the act is the production of canned fruits during the 1925-1926 canning season. As there have been considerable fluctuations in the quantity of canned fruits produced by individual canners since that season, it is desirable that the basis of voting should be in respect of the production during the season immediately preceding the election. This proposal is given effect to in clause 2 of the bill. It is proposed to increase the membership of the board by' providing in clause 3 of the bill for direct representation for State-controlled canneries, instead of the present arrangement whereby those interests are grouped for the purpose of representation on the board with the cooperative canneries. There is at present only one State-owned cannery in Australia, and that is the Leeton cannery, of New South Wales. During the last two seasons this cannery exported overseas 242,163 dozen 30-oz. tins, as against 232,726 dozen 30-oz. tins exported by the whole of the proprietary and privatelyowned interests, which are already directly represented on the board. The Canned Fruits Control Board is in favour of its membership being increased by giving separate representation to the Statecontrolled interests and, as it is not considered advisable to provide for the election of representatives of such interests, it is' proposed that this representative shall be nominated by the State Government concerned and appointed by the Governor-General to hold such office during the Governor-General's pleasure. The increase in the membership of the board from three to four members will necessitate severalslight amendments to section 10 of the act relating to meetings of the board as is proposed in clause 4 of the bill. In the case of a full meeting of four members, it will be necessary to give the chairman a casting vote as well as a deliberative vote, otherwise a deadlock would arise in the event of an equality of votes. Clause 5 of the bill is on similar lines to the last clause of the Dried Fruits Export Control Bill. This will be introduced for the consideration of the Senate later in the day.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Bill read a second time.

In committee:

Clause 1 agreed to.

Clause 2 (Definition of "cannery").

Senator Sir GEORGEPEARCE (Western Australia) [3.42 a.m.]. - This clause reads -

Section three of the principal act is amended -

(a)   by omitting from the definition of "cannery" the words and figures "canning season of 1925-1926" and inserting in their stead the words "year ended the thirtieth day of June , immediately preceding the election"; and

I ask the Honorary Minister (Senator Barnes) if the election referred to in this clause is a general election for the Federal Parliament or an election of a hoard to control theexport of canned fruits? Is it an election that has been held or is to beheld?

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