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Thursday, 1 April 1971

Senator GREENWOOD - I do not recall the exact words of the then Minister for Health on 17th February, although I am aware that he made a statement along the lines to which the honourable senator has referred. I think it is important to look at precisely what the then Minister for Health said. The position, as I understand it, is that the banning of cigarette advertising has not been shown to have reduced COn.sumption of cigarettes in those countries in which a ban has been in operation for some time. As 1 indicated in an answer I gave to Senator Turnbull earlier this week, there is a complex range of questions which have to be considered in any final determination of what should be the policy of the Government and what course shou lil be followed in this country.

Senator Willesee - Then what is the point of all the advertising by the companies?

Senator GREENWOOD - As to why the cigarette companies spend tremendous sums of money on advertising, it is not within my competence to know what goes on in the minds of those who control those companies. One can only say that the experience in the United Kingdom is that the money that was spent on advertising before the ban came into force has been utilised in other ways such as a coupon system. This is one of the complex questions which always have to be borne in mind in any examination of this matter.

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