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National Party of Australia Federal Convention 2000



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NATIONAL PARTY

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AUSTRALIA

FEDERAL CONVENTION 2000

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Introduction

Welcome! Welcome to the web site of the National Party Federal Convention 2000.

The National Party - leading the way in the new century

The Landmark Address of the Convention was given by the Hon John Anderson MP, Federal Leader of the National Party of Australia.

Transcript of Landmark Address by the Hon John Anderson_MP

Message from the Hon John Anderson MP, Federal Leader

2000 Policy Platform - Adobe Acrobat required.

Opening Ceremony

The Convention began with the Opening Ceremony, featuring the Lindisfarne Anglican School Choir and the Gold Coast Tweed Pipes and Drums. The keynote address was given by Mr Greg Daniel AM on Influencing contemporary Australia . His speech is available online.

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Opening_ Cere m on y summary_

Key note A ddre ss Transcript

Convention Commission Sessions

During the morning of the first day, conveners divided up into six groups to discuss important issues facing Australia's future.

Resources and tra de_ in the 21 st century- /_

Po pulation - our peop le beyond 2 000

Rural and regional Australia - its social and economic future

Information technolog y - op n_ortun ities and challen ges

Sustainable production from a fragile land

Australia and the K y oto Protocol

UVrztien and authorised for tiie National `"lea ,'y by P W C)avey, Level 5, 30 Carrington Si, Sydney NSW 2

{ Copyright 2000 National Party of Australia - NSW

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Landmark Address

The National Party - leading the way in the new century

The Hon John Anderson MP Federal Leader, National Party of Australia Deputy Prime Minister Minister for Transport and Regional Services

The National Party has made a vital, indeed irreplaceable contribution to this nation over the past 80 years in building a better life for Australians, and especially Australians living

outside the major cities.

We are a party of rural, regional and remote Australia.

In times of great change we have helped people turn challenge . =. into opportunity - and we'll go on doing so in the future.

We have been able to play this role because we are a house built on solid ground - a values-based party which recognises that the great strength of conservatism is that you manage change best when you know how important the underpinnings of a fair go for all, because we all matter, really are.

In an anxious western society somewhat uncertain about where it is going we can and we must stand like the rock of Gibraltar in our respect for the individual, man or woman, adult or child, black or white, those able to speak loudly for themselves and those who need us to speak for them.

A recent article in the Brisbane Courier-Mail titled "Nobody's Twins" clearly illustrates why our values - the ones we've never had to doubt - will be so important in the Australia of tomorrow.

Warning that we are in danger of treating people as commodities, it begins with an Italian man and his Portuguese wife hiring a British woman to act as surrogate mother for twins. Conception took place in a Greek laboratory using sperm from an American man donated at a Danish clinic, and an egg from a British woman - both anonymous.

It is already an ugly tale, but it gets worse.

When the couple was told the twins were girls, they decided not to proceed and told the surrogate mother to have an abortion.

Instead, the mother contacted an American agency who found adoptive parents for the children - a lesbian couple.

The couple subsequently argued over medical costs with the surrogate mother, and pulled out of the arrangement.

The tragic result is that the two little girls, now about seven months old, are in the care of a nanny while the legal system tries to figure just whose children they are.

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The author of the story comments that we are "losing our bearings".

Instinctively, I know - and I reckon you all do to - that we must stand against that driftage towards utilitarianism - the idea that those who have power only want those who they perceive to have value, and hang the rest.

If society keeps irrevocably wandering towards the cliff of destructive self-interest, all the things that Greg Daniel warned us about - division, self-centred opportunism, ever weaker commitment - will not only make the political process unworkable; it will unravel

our wonderful way of life in the best place on earth to live.

The National Party has not and must not lose its bearings. We believe in the intrinsic worth of the individual, and we must fearlessly champion the needs of those we represent. In everyday language, a fair go for all, because everyone matters.

I believe we have been right as a party to warn of the danger of our wonderful country dividing between urban haves and rural have-nots. I set out to ensure that people knew of the reality of how tough the going has become for many of our people and of the need to ensure that we don't as a nation make the fatal mistake of undervaluing the

people of rural, regional, remote and coastal Australia.

To ignore the plight of those hard-pressed communities would be to undermine social cohesion; to undermine social cohesion is to risk political stability and to risk political stability is to undermine the hard-won economic and social gains that so clearly benefit so many Australians and their families.

But let me say that having recognised the symptoms, you have to move on. An accurate diagnosis becomes vitally important if the patient is to be treated successfully.

I hear all sorts of ideologies blamed for the ills of country Australia. I'm not really one for isms - of any sort - especially extremism - and I especially want to spell out my belief that economic and political management is about better outcomes for people; not the pursuit of ideology for ideology's sake.

The chief, not the only, but the chief driver of the change and resulting pain for so many regional communities is technological change here and internationally, and the fact that because our markets are so small nearly everything we produce has to be sold overseas.

Many of our traditional jobs are disappearing and those that remain are changing. At the turn of the last century, probably half the workforce would have been employed in agriculture and mining; now, it would be less than three per . cent, yet production levels have soared.

To be fair - and it is very easy for us to overlook this - traditional jobs have been disappearing just as rapidly in urban Australia and while ever the farmer finds new technologies to gain extra productivity, while ever new gadgets perform more tasks, while ever we buy ever-more reliable labour savings devices - that change will prove

unstoppable.

The difference is that new urban jobs have emerged much more rapidly than regional jobs, and it is here that we face our greatest challenge as a party: how do we, having recognised honestly the extent and causes of change, facilitate the economic and social broadening and deepening of the regions we represent?

We have a huge moral responsibility - a huge responsibility, and one that I will not retreat from, to avoid the cruel hoaxes of false promises and snake oil solutions. They

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will only ensure that our rural communities are cheated of a better future, and ultimately, further deepen public cynicism about politics.

We must start by making sure we don't treat rural people as commodities by trying to impose solutions from on high. The Regional Australia Summit last year very clearly identified the need for governments to work in partnership with communities as we look for renewal; we have to recognise that there is no "one size fits all" solution.

Delegates themselves warned that regional communities in fact could not be helped if they fail to raise up and then support local leadership, drive and vision. In other words, negativity, even passivity, will kill a bush community.

But for me the most notable line from the summit came from a speaker who had led the revitalisation of a small town.

The line was: don't do what too many rural communities do - don't add up all the things you haven't got and then go begging bowl in hand to government. Rather, her advice was to add up what you have got, then look to what you need and seek assistance from governments to fill the gaps in partnership.

There was a time not so long ago when Moree was a community divided as it took centre stage as a hot-spot of race relations. The people of Moree looked to other people to solve its problems - for example, to governments to take charge of law and order, to "fix" indigenous unemployment, educational disadvantage, and so on.

Then something happened in Moree. The community's own leaders took on prime responsibility for solving their own problems - and it makes me really proud to tell you that Moree is a community in real transformation.

Last week that community launched a new town slogan - Moree: leading the way in . --reconciliation. And let me tell you it is. With carefully targeted support from government, with the drive and initiative from local leaders, black and white, things have changed. The spirit of the place has changed to one of hope. This is what we mean when we talk about practical reconciliation.

It is the sort of story I would dearly love to see, as Leader of the National Party, repeated again and again across this nation, across our electorates, because it is in rural Australia that we have the most to gain, and the most to offer.

So - let me turn to the very positive story of what we have going for us and what a dramatic difference good policy from this party is making and will continue to make in government.

Never - never - let it be forgotten that under Labor, inflation and interest rates ripped the guts out of country Australia.

We delivered no more valuable policy outcome for Australian farmers, small businesses and country people than reducing interest rates (which were more than double America's in the second half of the 1980s and are now the same or even slightly less) -the savings are worth hundreds of millions of dollars every year to the farm sector alone.

Remember when every year you had to adjust your budgets for farm and business cost increases of 12 to 13 per cent. No more.

Remember the Beazley black hole - a 10 billion dollar deficit. Remember how under Labor your taxpayers' bankcard debt went from 16 billion dollars to 96 billion dollars in the last five years of Labor.

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We will have reduced that debt by more than half by the middle of next year - saving you billions of dollars in taxes going just to pay the interest on the debt Labor chalked up on your behalf.

And as we've got our economic house in order we have been able to do lots and lots more to give country people the resources - what I call the tools - to craft a better future, whether bolstering existing industries or pursuing the new ones - tourism, further value-adding, information technology, biomass, whatever - that are so much needed.

Labor says we have cut services in the bush. The truth is that they cut them or never offered them in the first place. The truth is that we are restoring and adding sevices.

It is this National-Liberal government that instituted the Medicare Easyclaim program.

this government that introduced service delivery standards for Telstra, backed by fines to enforce them; this government that extended the telephone universal service obligation to include access to a decent digital data line for internet connection;

this government that negotiated a new mobile phone system after Labor contracted to kill off analogue phones;

this government that is funding the Rural Transaction Centres for small towns across the nation; this government that is giving rural health the right priority - and often battling State Labor governments to do it;

this government that encouraged Bendigo Bank and other community banking ventures and backed the provision of Commonwealth Bank business banking services through country Post Offices;

this government that has put the Job Network into hundreds of country towns that never had direct access to the old CES.

Ladies and gentlemen, the prime focus of the Regional Summit was to find better ways of delivering services and stimulating regional development, and to find practical means of involving and empowering local communities in that process.

And you will be aware that the 62 mmlaon rco rmm commitment to a regional health package as delivered

in this year's Budget, with a $562 of an overall regional package worth $1.8 billion.

I am truly proud of the More Doctors Better Services package because it has been widely acclaimed by those who understand rural health and the most comprehensive package to tackle the problems in many decades.

Other elements of the budget package include:

increased suppor milie throu gh a relaxation of the assets test on Youth Allowance - formerly business fa throug as AUSTUDY; the Stronger Families and Communities Strategy that meets a major recommendation of

the Regional Summit and is putting more on-ground support in place for families and

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boosting community leadership; and

the 310 million dollar extension and enhancement of the highly successful Agriculture -Advancing Australia package I delivered in 1997;

Let me remind you of some of the programs included in the original 525 million AAA package. An effective IED scheme, known as Farm Management Deposits; decent income support for hard-pressed farm families; a new program to support farm business skills development; support for inter-generational transfer of the family farm.

These were not little things - they were long standing National Party policies and the government delivered, just as we have delivered in many other areas

on greater resourcing for the national quarantine effort,

on drought relief,

on meat inspection reform,

on farm forestry

on regional forest agreements and timber industry development,

on rural telecommunications through Networking the Nation,

on giving our pigmeat industry a brighter future through strategic investment in processing.

Tax reform will hand a significant new bag of tools to rural communities.

There is no such thing as a level playing field - no such thing - but it would be pretty silly not to take a big opportunity to take our own domestic tilt out. Our current tax system adds around 4.5 billion dollars worth of anti-export tax tilt - and overwhelmingly the export sector is based in rural and regional Australia.

Labor never tackled this problem.

Government taxes on transport will come down very significantly, with business petrol being cheaper, diesel used in trucks being much cheaper and excise on diesel used by rail operators scrapped altogether.

I remember the Spring Ridge branch of the party pursuing that policy 11 or 12 years ago.

Labor never tackled it either - they made it worse. Fuel excise increased by 500% under Hawke and Keating.

Keating told Australia in 1992 that not only did we not need a GST, but that we could have big personal income tax cuts and no increases in indirect taxes.

In fact, the tax cuts were slashed, fuel excise and wholesale sales tax were increased (without any compensation) and they still couldn't balance the books, as I mentioned earlier.

You can't trust Labor with money - and let me warn that a leopard doesn't change its spots. They have form - bad form. We would be crazy to let anyone forget it.

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Ladies and gentlemen.

Never, never forget that Labor's approach is to try and fit up somebody else for their base political ends no matter what the cost to the integrity of the political process.

Sometimes they go so far over the top that it blows up in their faces - witness Mr Beattie's climb-down after he tried to fit us up for big fuel price hikes on July 1 st.

For Labor, the truth is dispensable.

Just look at dairy. NSW Country Labor had the unmitigated gall to put out a press release Tony Kelly's name referring to the Federal Government's dairy deregulation. He is quite intelligent enough to know that this is a simple untruth.

There is no federal deregulation. We are not rescinding regulation - there isn't any to rescind.

Let's put a few hard facts on the table about dairy deregulation.

It is going to be very tough on dairy farmers, their families and communities, especially in NSW and Queensland. We know that. It is not something that was pursued by either. industry in those states or by the Federal Government.

It emanates from Victoria, where unbelievable productivity growth and expansion now sees 64% - two thirds - of Australia's milk produced in that state. The Victorian industry and the Victorian government - first under Kennett and then under Bracks - made it very

plain that they would deregulate.

Section 92 of the Constitution in my view means what we've always taken it to mean: that any device designed to restrict interstate trade and commerce will be struck down by the courts.

In other words, with their massive production, milk will flow across State borders as a result of Victorian deregulation.

Industry leadership has been grappling with this problem for years - the Victorian company, Midland Milk, first put market milk into Sydney in the mid-1980s and an uneasy peace was negotiated, but it was never going to last.

When it became obvious what was coming, the Commonwealth Government moved to put in place the biggest restructuring package - worth 1.8 billion dollars - ever seen in this country.

There were some observers who said to me, look out, don't offer a package, the states and others will end up trying to make out that the Commonwealth is responsible for deregulation.

Some people have now tried to do this, especially Labor ministers. I make no apology for saying we could just not stand by. We could not just allow Victorian legislation to result in cold turkey restructuring - the sheer human pain would be so much worse.

We have put in place a very big package indeed. A dairy farmer came up to me in on the Atherton Tablelands in Queensland a couple of weeks ago to complain about it. asked him if he would like it withdrawn if he didn't like it. "Oh no, he recoiled. Without it my situation would be intolerable. Please don't scrap it. I'm worried as hell, but I'm glad

you went in to bat for us."

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I can report to you that I have spoken to Professor Alan Fels of the ACCC about the possible profiteering by processors and retailers out of deregulation - you all know the stories about the consumer not paying less for the product while the farmer is pinned to the boards.

Such action would be in the current situation, just unconscionable.

A couple of days ago Senator Ron Boswell and dairy farmers leader Pat Rowley met again with the ACCC to seek the capacity for farmers to negotiate prices with processors collectively for a period of time. This is an important development.

Labor states then are using their sovereign power to deregulate while trying to gutlessly and untruthfully fit up the Federal Government and the National Party in partricular, :. when'we are in truth helping - the only government helping with the notable exception of conservative Western Australia.

Let me make one other point. Some use this as another reason to flirt with independents. Independents could have done nothing to stop this process - indeed the' independents in the Victorian and Federal parliaments did just that - nothing. Nor could they have participated in the government's decision to deliver the package and then seek the practical assistance of the ACCC.

Independents can say what they like, reflect any local prejudice - right or wrong. But they can't deliver.

Only teams can do that and as Larry Anthony said this week, a champion team will beat,, a team of champions any time.

I hear some comment that sometimes seems to suggest that we are only seen to be performing when we are, quote, differentiating the product.

I don't feel the need at all to be defensive about this party's identity or its performance. We are dedicated to improving the lives of people who live outside the major cities.

Each member of the National Party team contributes to the government team. Each player, whether ministers or members of backbench committees or whatever, pull their weight as part of the team - and I am proud of what we achieve.

This is a team that produces better outcomes even in these difficult times for rural Australia than we ever could in fragmentation - or, heaven forbid, in opposition - and let us not forget who our enemies are - Labor and say anything, do nothing independents.

Yes, Labor - they who hope to win the next election scaremongering against the very tax reforms they've said they will keep if they win government.

Would a fragmented team have had the discipline to restructure our nation's economic foundations? To have developed and delivered the 1.5 billion dollar Natural Heritage Trust? One billion dollars to take rural telecommunications into the 21st century through programs like Networking the Nation? The AAA pacakge? The health package - part of

the 1.8 billion dollar rural package in this year's budget?

And would any of them have been as well designed if we weren't a fully functional team?

Let's get real - it is essential that we have unity of performance if we are to secure the best future. We have recently seen what happens when the team is forced off the field in Queensland, NSW and Victoria - and it is not pretty.

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Let me be blunt too: some of our own are too quick and ready to talk us down - they do not think before they blandly assert that this very active government has done nothing for regional Australia and they effectively encourage people to vote against us whenever they do.

Let me return to the government team's delivery of tools for the future.

Today I announce a new 90 million dollar Regional Solutions Programme that is another clear signal that the Federal Government accepts that it has an important role to play in regional development.

Over the next four years, the Regional Solutions Programme will be targeting two key types of disadvantaged communities in regional, rural and remote areas.

Firstly, rural and remote areas experiencing economic stagnation and/or population decline due to industry restructuring or a lack of diversity in their economic base;

And secondly, regional areas with high population growth experiencing above average unemployment levels - places such as here on the North Coast of NSW and South East Queensland.

The programme will be administered in my Department of Transport and Regional Services. Information kits are now available and first calls for funding are expected in September of this year.

There are a few of points I want to stress about the programme before I move on.'.'

Firstly, its objective is to contribute to projects that enhance the self-reliance of communities and reduce economic and social disadvantage - helping people to help themselves. They will be able to seek funding from as little as 1000 dollars to 500,000 -dollars.

Secondly, it will be sufficiently flexible to allow communities to develop and implement locally focused solutions to meet these challenges - whether they are economic challenges or ones of essential service provision.

Thirdly, I know there is a lot of concern in country areas that communities have been planned to death. This planning has been very important in terms of getting people to identify what needs to be done.

The Regional Solutions Programme will provide assistance to get on with the job.

As I move around Australia, two really big ticket items come up. Firstly, the question of what the nation must do to sustainably manage Australia's fragile natural resource base, and secondly, the deterioration of our infrastructure.

These are big challenges and they demand big solutions.

If we fail to tackle them, we will have failed the test of national leadership. Significant investment is needed in both these areas if we are to secure the viability and competitiveness not just of rural Australia, but of our nation.

As I have mentioned already, the Natural Heritage Trust has been a really important initiative for country Australia, but I am the first to acknowledge that the nation -landholders, communities and governments at all levels - need to do lots more.

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The scourge of salinity, the worsening health of our river systems, land clearing, the spread of acid sulphate soils, the loss of biodiversity, the massive annual loss of topsoil, the disastrous blossoming of exotic weeds, the impact of feral animals -they all must be addressed on a scale beyond our comprehension even a few years ago.

This raises the very, serious question as to who should pay and how.

There are essentially four options for financing this massive investment in terms of the contribution that the Commonwealth will need to make over time.

Firstly, the Federal Budget can be pushed back into deficit and the expenditure placed on the national bankcard - not a good way to go.

Secondly, we can address the problems incrementally as budgetary circumstances allow in competition with other demands on the budget like defence and education, and urge the States to increase expenditure on infrastructure as GST revenue starts to flow. They'd want to do better than NSW offering a paltry 500 million out of 20 billion dollars for regional infrastructure in that state.

Thirdly, we can raise taxes, as is being advocated by sections of the scientific community who are suggesting some sort of dedicated environmental levy be imposed -. but we are a government that believes in lowering taxes and increasing incentives.

And fourthly, we can swap assets for assets - by directing proceeds from one form of publicly owned asset to another, if society gets a better return.

We can cash in our national equity in assets that now more appropriately reside in the hands of the private sector and reinvest that equity where it is needed - in our natural and other infrastructure.

Ladies and gentlemen, we cannot shirk this debate.

I don't pretend for one minute that the solution is simple. Later this year I think we can reasonably anticipate a vigorous public debate about the fourth of these funding options as we come to the issue of selling the rest of Telstra. -

So let me reiterate the policy of the Parliamentary National Party -we will not support the further sale of Telstra unless and until the Telecommunications Service Inquiry certifies that service levels in country areas are adequate.

I am confident that country people will support this position - that they will tell us when they are satisfied Telstra has earned the country seal of approval.

Our objective is simple - we want all rural Australians to have affordable and reliable access to world class telecommunications services so that they are able to participate fully in the new economy.

That is why the National Party will be in there fighting to deliver on the item that topped the list of recommendations from last year's Regional Australia Summit - the extension of mobile telephone coverage throughout Australia.

Anybody who lives in or regularly travels through country Australia knows just how badly run down our infrastructure has become.

For me, fixing our local government roads is the highest priority. A way must be found to inject significant new capital into our local roads infrastructure.

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Like the capillaries that carry blood throughout a healthy body, our local roads are the essential network that must be sustained if we are to ensure the health and vitality of our rural communities and industries.

When studies are showing that current spending on local roads by the three tiers of government is meeting only around 50% of need, something needs to be done.

Targeting local roads as a key area for action does not in any way diminish the importance of investing in other infrastructure. The Federal Government is, for example, spending 250 million dollars upgrading the interstate mainline rail track and 270 million dollars upgrading the roads infrastructure serving the nation's ports.

We are investing 165 million dollars in the Alice Spring to Darwin railway.

And through a federal contribution of just $300,000 towards a feasibility study, the chances of securing a major national building block - an inland rail freight link between Melbourne and Brisbane - and ultimately to Darwin - are looking brighter by the day.

Ladies and gentlemen

In the last couple of weeks I have publicly expressed my concern about the direction of water resources policy in this country under the influence of National Competition Policy and the Council of Australian Governments water reform agreement.

At the outset, lest I be misquoted or misunderstood, let me record my support for the key objective of the COAG agreement - achieving a better balance between obvious environmental needs and the efficient economic use of water resources.

There are two issues of very great concern to me.

The first is the failure of state governments, NSW being the major culprit - their failure to recognise water property rights as is provided for under the agreement.

The States have a moral obligation to ensure that where these rights are removed, such is occurring across New South Wales, compensation or adjustment assistance is made available.

If it is good enough for the Australian Constitution to require just terms compensation for the acquisition of property by the Commonwealth, it should be good enough for the States. It is a question of justice. _

Country Labor - where are you now?

The second issue relates to the way the COAG agreement is effectively being used, under the cover of National Competition Policy, to prevent the States from investing in new water development projects or to upgrade existing infrastructure.

This is being done on the premise that new investments by governments on behalf of taxpayers must earn a real commercial rate of return that covers not only construction, operations and maintenance, but also replacement..

If governments applied this sort of test to other infrastructure, we would never build another road, another school, another hospital, another swimming pool or another civic centre anywhere.

Governments cannot be expected to ignore the significant regional development

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opportunities that can be unlocked by new water investment simply because the rate of return doesn't measure up to some bureaucrat's yardstick.

If a new water development proposal stacks up environmentally and it can be developed commercially, that is great, but governments must be free to make a contribution if they judge that it is in the public interest to do so.

The water policy issues I have outlined today highlight the need for the current review of National Competition Policy to closely scrutinise the so-called public interest test.

Critical factors such as the regional or sectoral impact of reforms and the potential economic and employment benefits that accrue from investment in regional industries must be taken fully into account.

Ladies and gentlemen, I would like to come back now to where I started.

If we fall into the practice of measuring things only in terms of their economic costs and benefits, then we will stand guilty as accused of abrogating our responsibilities to the community.

If you give me a choice between either squeezing every last cent of cost reductions out of an industry for the benefit of consumers or ensuring that industry is sustained because it creates prosperity and jobs in the regions, I will take the latter.

To do otherwise is to treat people - to treat individuals, families and even whole communities - as commodities that can be traded according to some utopian economic model. .

The National Party is making a vital contribution to a soundly based economic platform for increasing national prosperity and jobs. But economic policy is not an end in itself, and prosperity is only a partial measure of a nation's worth.

This was brought home to me very forcefully a few weeks ago, when I met with some of Melbourne's senior corporate executives. We discussed the economic state of the nation and we discussed some of the issues surrounding infrastructure funding that have canvassed to day.

But they quickly changed the subject to issues of social priority - what sort of society do we want, on what basis will we prepare the future for our children?

Our real strength and our real value lies in the individuals, families and communities that make our nation.

I don't need to tell you that the traditional values of right and wrong have been under assault for decades. You all know this. We have been moving seemingly inexorably to a "no blame, no guilt, no fault" society in which we can do anything we like because we

kid ourselves that ultimately we are not responsible for our actions.

The result of all this is a sense of helplessness in the face of change and social problems. The modern world simply seems to roll over the top of us and leave us battered and bruised in its wake. And Governments are increasingly pressured to take a line of least resistance.

When this Government wanted to introduce limits on access to pornographic sites on the Internet, we were told it was pointless to try because people would simply move sites offshore and the only result would be to take business out of Australia. There was a similar reaction when we asked for a 12-month moratorium on Internet gambling.

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When we have moved against the establishment of euthanasia clinics and heroin injecting rooms, we have met the same reaction: you cannot stop it happening somewhere, so why try to stop it happening here?

Well, I'm sorry, but I believe that a country has a perfect right to express some community standards, and express them through legislation. If we, as Australians, do not want these.things to happen on our shores, if we want to send a message to the rest of the world about our community standards, then we should exercise our sovereign

right to do so.

We can do it, and the stand that the National Party made over classification of X-rated videos demonstrates that we can do it. And let me take this opportunity to thank De-Anne Kelly once again for alerting the party to this issue.

When De-Anne showed us what was happening, we knew what was right, and we stuck by it. We did not try to tell people what to watch - but we were darned sure that what they were watching would be properly described. We believed that calling these videos Non Violent Erotica was a dilution of community standards. We stuck to that view. And we were right.

The calls into my office, the letters I received, the email traffic, tell me we were right.

Ladies and gentlemen, for 80 years this party has been built on the foundation of family and community.

The economic policies of the party have changed over the years as the economic climate has changed.

But the core of the National Party has always been in reward for individual enterprise; support for the family, and community responsibility.

Well, I think it is time we proclaimed fearlessly our values again.

The National Party does not have a champagne set, or chardonnay socialists. We don't play with fancy social theories or engineering. We don't have glass ceilings or percentage quotas.

But we do recognise individual enterprise and that it should be rewarded. We do know that the family unit is the best way to bring up children. And we do know that a community is people working together, not just a neighbourhood. We know that people are not commodities, whether they have a voice or not.

And we also know that the success of government policies is not measured in some accounting bottom line, but in the economic and social enrichment of the people in those communities. Success is not buying something cheaper - it is a better life.

This party has two clear visions:

A social vision founded on building productive responsible individuals; and

An economic vision founded on building productive communities.

Both are needed in Australia in the 21st Century to secure the future for all our children, and both are being delivered by the National Party.

When I became National Party leader some 12 months ago I committed our great party

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Landmark Address - John Anderson

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to reaffirming its credentials as the pa rty of first choice for count ry people - to becoming the party of policy excellence for country Australia.

We do not hold a mortgage on the rural and regional vote. We never have and it would be arrogant in the extreme to believe that we ever could - or indeed should.

If we hold a mortgage over anything - it is over our own destiny.

We have always been nation-builders in this party. We still are.

Stand sure.

Written and tho^ seci fcr tiie Natioriai SP,a^ y ` by P' Davey, Levei 5, 30 Carrington St, Sydney NSW 2000 Copyright 2000 National Party of Australia - NSW

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Leader's Message

John Anderson, Federal Leader

This second Federal Convention of the National Party marks the 80th anniversary of the Party, and is an occasion to celebrate our history. It is a time to reflect on the strengths and core values that nurtured and sustained this Party through the greater part of the 20th century. .

But this Convention, at the opening of a new century, also provides us with the opportunity to consider how we can take the strengths and core values of our past into a new future.

It is a significant honour to be the Federal Parliamentary Leader of this great Party and take great pride in the Parliamentary team I have around me. But that honour and pride have their foundation in performance.

The National Party has not maintained its representation in Federal Parliament for 80 years on the basis of promises. The people of country Australia put us there because the National Party has a record of performance.

National Party Parliamentarians know that the most important challenges is the one that lies ahead, not the one that has just been met.

The challenges that lie ahead of us are great indeed and the need for strong National Party Federal representation has never been greater. How we meet those challenges will be critical, not only to the people we represent but also to the nation as whole.

So while we celebrate our past during this Convention, we also have work to do.

We have a future to build.

•d for the ;; ' ! r , ? y Level 5 30 Carring ton t, Sydney ^`V 2000 ^^'!`'i^ 2.^ c,. cil.^, ....,_ _^ iUr ^J.it.^_ . ^3^ c3 i> :^s E cJV . . 30 ^. ^ ` J S^1C y NS ©© Co pyright 2i)O0 Naiicna Party of Austra l ia - NSV,,'

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Parliamentary members and party leaders procession

with the Gold Coast Tweed Pipes and Drums.

Gold Coast Tweed Pipes and Drums and followed by state party leaders from all states and National Party federal members of Parliament.

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Opening Ceremony

Songs by the Lindisfarne Anglican School Choir

Opening Prayer, Introductions, Keynote Address

arish,

Tweed Heads

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Keynote Address

Mr. Greg Daniel AM Chief Executive, Issues and Images INFLUENCING CONTEMPORARY AUSTRALIA

Thank you Helen for that generous introduction.

I am honoured to be here today.

Distinguished guests, Federal and State Parliamentarians, Party members, ladies and gentlemen.

Before I embark on the topic at hand I would like To show you something.

Show video IOC presentation Monaco

What you've just been watching was the end sequence. of the Sydney Olympic Bid's final presentation to the IOC in Monaco - back in September 1993. t

This was the culmination, the last shot, in a'two and a half year campaign to influence

the 90 or so members of the IOC to vote in favour of Australia as the host of the 2000 Games.

I've shown it to you for three reasons:

If you never know when you're beaten, chances are you may very well win. You see, at the start of Sydney's quest for the Games not too many people gave us Buckley's of getting over the line in first place.

Most 'informed' people thought Beijing had it in the bag.

Beijing thought they had it in the bag.

But there were some of us who thought maybe not.

Maybe not.

And maybe, just maybe. With the right strategy. The right team. A lot of hard work. And a belief we could win - then maybe we could cause an upset.

And we did.

Opponents, commentators, 'informed persons' have been writing the National Party off for the past 20 years. Maybe not. Maybe not.

The second reason I showed you that video was simply to demonstrate how much concerted effort must go into a campaign if your cause is going to exert influence on its intended target audience - or audiences.

Bear this in mind.

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The video sequence you were shown was simply five minutes out of a one hour

presentation that was, in turn, a small part of a 2-1/2 year campaign to influence - 90 people.

The third reason I showed you the Olympic Bid video was that the scenes in it very deliberately underscore the complex and multi-faceted nature of contemporary Australian society..

And if any cause or body is to exert influence on such A fragmented societal mix they must fully comprehend the complexity of the task they have before them.

It is useless wishing our society was less complex or, worse still, hoping that it'can be made less complex.

Such a hope is pure delusion.

The reality is that, principally because of technology and its ever increasing accessibility and affordability our society will become much more fragmented and exerting influence' over its constituents that much more difficult.

Nowhere is the manifestation of this complexity more apparent than within the commercial marketing services sector. .

In Australia, last year, the marketing community spent $20 billion attempting to influence consumers about what to buy, where to bank, which car to drive - and so on.

Contrary to what most people would believe to be the case a significant majority of that, sum was not spent on television, radio, newspaper, magazine and outdoor advertising.

What is commonly termed - the mass media.

Instead the majority of all marketing communications expenditure, some $12.5 billion was spent - in the jargon of the trade - 'below the line'.

Basically 'below the line' means any form of communication with consumers apart from mass media advertising.

Sales promotion, corporate design,.field marketing, public relations, direct marketing, merchandising, sponsorship, investor relations, internet campaigns, point of sale interactive displays, product placement.

You name it. The world of 'below the line' marketing communications is where companies are increasingly spending more and more of their promotional budgets.

While mass media advertising budgets have grown at an average of some 5% over the past five years the growth in 'below the line' expenditure has been averaging 20%.

In the internet alone promotional budgets have increased at the rate of 100% per annum over the past three years and are predicted to double every year for the next decade.

What does all this tell us about contemporary Australia? What does it tell us about the 'info-war' that marketers wage every day in an attempt to influence consumer spending patterns?

It tells us that mass markets and mass media and mass media advertising are being increasingly viewed as much less effective - much less influential - than they once were

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when it comes to getting a message across in a way that consumers find persuasive.

It tells us that the old marketing adage: 'budgets follow audiences' has never been more accurate.

All this would be of mild academic interest to you if it didn't so directly cut to the heart of the challenge you face, as a party, to influence voting behaviour in contemporary Australia.

For what is a political party if it is not a marketing organisation?

You certainly don't manufacture things - you market them.

You market policies. You market candidates. You market - ideas.

And every few years you have a big sale - called an Election - and you hope people will turn up to buy what you've been marketing over the previous 36 months or so.

So you must attempt to understand what is going on in the mind of your audience to the same degree that companies are compelled to do.

And what is going on in the mind of contemporary Australia?

And why are marketing organisations having to go to such lengths to influence behaviour that was once capable of being swayed by the simplistic methodology of mass media advertising?

One of the most recent and far-reaching studies into these questions has revealed what many of my colleagues in advertising have long felt to be true - but don't like to talk about.

And that truth is that mass marketing is an outdated concept because mass markets in Australia and much of the western world have virtually ceased to exist.

The truth is that people no longer want to be treated as part of a larger group but as individuals marching to the beat of their own drum!

In her extensive research study published earlier this month Susan Stancombe painted a picture of the contemporary consumer as fickle, unpredictable, anarchic, attention-deficient, Do It Yourself, self-willed and suspicious.

Now, does that sound like anybody the National Party has to deal with at Election time?

Too right it does. It's the same person.

Susan Stancombe's consumer - is your voter. The consumer does not differentiate much any more between politics and whatever else is on offer at the supermarket.

And, what's more they don't have time to even think about it.

Most decisions now are made at the last minute. '-That's why marketers and retailers are pouring extraordinary resources into concepts aimed at influencing consumers inside the store - or right at the point of purchase.

80% of people now shop without shopping lists.

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70% of people make the decision about what to buy when they're inside the store.

50% cross the threshold of a shop without any pre-conceived notion at all about what they are going to purchase.

The parallels with politics in Australia are obvious.

Over the past twenty years the number of undecided voters at the beginning of a campaign has grown by around 200%.

Generally now, at least 30% of voters are totally undecided when a campaign begins.

And most of those 30% don't begin to arrive at a decision until the final week.

10% of them still haven't made up their minds as they're walking into the voting booth!

So consumer attitudes and voter attitudes have converged and will continue to do so.

You face the same problems as any other marketer and your response should follow, suggest, a similar'path.

In essence professional marketers have arrived at a view that society is increasingly fractured, frenetic and self-indulgent and that the only way to influence the behaviour of. such a segmented society is to customise messages for it in as many formats as

possible.

So, if you're one of those people who have thought about whether the National Party is getting its message across effectively I hope I've been able to illustrate that getting your. message across and influencing contemporary Australia - has never been harder.

The good news is that it's equally hard for the other established parties - both Liberal and Labor.

And the longer the Democrats, Greens and One Nation are around the harder it will become for them too.

The real danger comes from Independents who are as one with contemporary consumers in'attitude.

Fickle, unpredictable, anarchic, attention- deficient, Do It Yourself, self-willed, suspicious and self-indulgent.

I'm sure many of you have had personal experience with Independents who exemplify these characteristics.

I know I have.

In my view the National Party has much to learn from the growth of the Independent-vote.

But before I elaborate on that let me make it plain that I do not ascribe the Independents success to anything other than luck.

The luck of timing.

Indeed, I do not believe the Independents themselves have a clue as to the real reasons

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why they've been successful.

I'm sure they all put it down to their superior abilities, policies and personalities.

While the real reason they have been a success and remain a danger lies in the convergence of general consumer attitudes with political attitudes.

The Independents cashed in on an electorate that had fundamentally lost faith in long-standing institutions.

As Susan Stancombe said in her report, "All the old belief systems have collapsed. Religion, men, linear time, community. We're seeing the demise of all the big guiding stories".

So Where does that leave the National Party? And what can you learn from the Independents?

The Independents represent the triumph of localism. The triumph of micro issues over macro. Of guttering over highways. Of the back-fence over Defence.

Over those things which voters feel are still within their capacity to influence.

Basically what the Independents are saying, and are getting away with, is that the big parties don't care about you - the voter - they only care about themselves. About perpetuating their existence.

I would strongly urge you not to underestimate the appeal of this essentially negative message.

Rural and regionally domiciled Australians are most susceptible to its siren-song because many of them are much more individualistic and independently minded - in the best sense - than capital city based citizens.

So, as a consequence, I would advise you not to swim against the tide of contemporary opinion if you wish to influence it.

You must, as a party, be seen to 'go with the flow'.

This does not mean abandoning the big issues which will always determine our destiny as a nation.

To build, as Helen Dickie said, 'foundations for future generations'.

But it does mean, in between elections and during Elections, accentuating local initiatives, local issues and local personalities.

You must act locally - but think globally.

During an election, for example, I would emphasise the promotion of the local candidate or local member and his or her views or track record on local issues.

I would do this at the expense of promoting the Party or its collective policy on matters of national interest.

More than ever before people are voting for people.

People they believe are in tune with their concerns on matters of local significance.

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And the National Party, of all the major parties, is in a unique position to take advantage of this trend.

The nature of most of your electorates enables you to customise local messages without undue media wastage.

In the capital cities this is impossible. Mission Impossible.

You couldn't run a commercial for a specific candidate or member on metropolitan television without showing it to hundreds of thousands of people who aren't within the target audience.

As with media and promotion - the same with market research - pour your research resources into electorate issues. Probe deeply and probe often.

Find out what people are concerned about - locally.

Electorate by electorate. Town by town. Suburb By suburb. Street by street.

In business there is a saying: 'Don't sweat the small stuff.

Well, in politics I'd suggest, sweating the small stuff is the way to win big.

In the end, for the National Party, influencing contemporary Australia means having the numbers in Parliament to do so.

In order to maintain and grow those numbers you have to fully appreciate the reality of Australia in the 21st Century.

Not one nation - but many.

} Thank you for inviting me here today.

Writtei nd iuihored for ti e N: tio, a Party by P Davey, Level 5, 30 Carrington St, Sydney NSW 2000 .© Copyright 2000 National Party of Australia - NSW

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Convention Commission

Resources and Trade in the 21st Century Chairman: Hon Mark Vaile MP Deputy Leader, Minister for Trade Facilitators

Hon Bruce Scott MP Minister for Veteran's Affairs Minister Assisting the Minister for Defence Hon Hendy Cowan MLA Leader Western Australian Nationals ,Deputy Premier, Minister for Commerce and Trade, Regional Development

and Small Business

Introductory Summary

Australia enters the 21st Century as a strong and emerging middle power on the global trade scene. Important domestic reforms over the last four years, including removing over $3.5 billion in indirect taxes on exporters each year, are creating a more favourable environment for exporters, particularly small and medium sized enterprises. Regional

Australia in particular stands to benefit from increased trade opportunities. One in four jobs in regional Australia depends on exports, more than in the capital cities. Regional Australia generates over half Australia's exports, and accounts for one third of

Australia's workforce. Trade is changing rapidly. Exports of primary products and minerals historically accounted for most of our export earnings. However recent years have seen a huge diversification, with significant growth in the trade of services, while e-commerce is removing many of the traditional barriers to trade. The 21st century will see

many more advances in communications technology, making the global trading market more crowded and competitive. Increasing concerns about the exhaustion of our primary resources and the likelihood of increased environmental awareness by global consumers will also make the 21st century a more complex environment for Australia to compete in. How should regional Australia respond to this emerging trade environment? Are exporters in regional Australia equipped with the necessary tools to take advantage of technological improvements and niche marketing in the global economy? Is Australia taking full advantage of its enormous stocks of natural resources and clean, green energy? And importantly, how do we ensure the Australian community understands the

importance of our export efforts? These are the challenges we must address in 2000.

Report by the Hon Mark Vaile MP Federal Minister for Trade Deputy Leader of the National Party

The Commission Session on Trade and Resources in the 21st Century covered a range of issues relating to improving Australia's trade performance and international competitiveness.

The Commission endorsed the National Party's current Platform in relation to trade policy, however further development of the Party's Trade platform is recommended in the following areas;

• Greater emphasis on accurate labelling for our export industries and for imports competing against our domestic industries • Improved identification of the products from Australia with improved packaging which will enhance the export competitiveness of Australian produce on world markets

• The need to highlight the benefits of market access gains and the broader benefits to Australian exporters and the community of an effective system of international trade

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rules and that this information be conveyed directly to the Australian domestic audience • To assist Australian industries, AQIS needs to communicate effectively with relevant producers in relation to import and export quarantine requirements and the processes applied

• To improve communication efforts which highlight the inflated prices overseas consumers are paying due to existing tariff and non-tariff barriers applied in their countries • The international competitiveness of our resource industries should not be diminished

by artificial impediments due to international obligations such as the Kyoto protocols • Any further reductions in Australia's remaining tariffs should only be undertaken within the framework of Australia's position in multilateral trade negotiations which provide improved market access

The Commission is confident that these issues can be addressed within the current policy formation framework within the Party, however it is important that relevant industry groups are consulted at every available opportunity.

17 June 2000 - TWEED HEADS

Written and authorised for the National Party by F Davey, Level 5, 30 Carrington St, Sydney NSW 2000 © Copyright 2000 National Party of Australia - NSW

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Convention Commission

Population - our people beyond 2000 Chairman: Hon Larry Anthony MP Minister for Community Services Facilitators

Mr John Forrest MP Chief National Party Whip Mr Scott Mitchell President Young National Party of Australia

Introductory Summary

Australia's population trends have changed dramatically over the past 20 years. In 1960 there were just under 10.4 million people. By 1970 that had grown to 12.6 million and by 1980 to 14.8 million. Over the past 20 years, our population has grown by around five million. Today there are 19 million people living in Australia. Immigration has historically

been the prime source of population growth and it remains a fact that without immigration, Australia would have a negative population growth. Immigrants have contributed to the hugely diverse cultural development of Australia, especially in more recent years with the growth in immigration from Asian countries. We are faced with a

very substantial ageing block in our population and we continue to see major population concentration on our capital cities and coastal areas. International experience suggests the optimum size of a city is up to two million people - about the size of Brisbane and Adelaide. Beyond that, mega-city problems arise - rising crime, squalor and inefficiency.

Has Sydney, with around four million people, reached the population saturation point? Can we attract more people to regional centres, rural and remote areas? Can those areas sustain more people? Do we need a long-term policy on new regional city development to ease pressure on the largest cities? These are the challenges for the future.

Witter and aulhc,-ised for the Na iiona! PthrI by P Davey, Level 5, 30 Carrington St, Sydney NSW 2000 © Copyright 203() National Party of Australia - NSW

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Convention Commission

Rural and regional Australia - its social and economic future Chairman: Senator the Hon Grant Tambling Parliamentary Secretary to the for Health and Aged Care

Facilitators Mrs Pam Stallman President National Party Women's Federal Council Dr Andrew Bolam BA PhD formerly Lecturer in Regional Development, Flinders University

Introductory Summary

Early in 1999, National Party Federal Leader John Anderson warned that Australia was in danger of becoming 'two nations', divided between the relatively strong city economies and the less affluent country areas. It is a situation that has been developing over a long time. Increasing mechanisation has been reducing the country labour force for more than 50 years and so undermining the population base of country communities. They were further undermined in the 1980s and 1990s with the rationalisation of . government and commercial services, some of the worst droughts in history, record high

inflation and interest rates, the collapse of the wool market and generally weak commodity prices. Under John Anderson's leadership, the National Party has successfully focused more government attention on the needs of country and regional Australia than at any time since Federation. He developed the Regional Australia

Summit, from which important action is flowing. He is pushing for a national goal for the;: first decade of the new century to be the rebuilding of regional Australia's economic and community base. Many issues come together in addressing this subject - generating

greater unity of purpose and social cohesion, improving the equality of services like health, education and communications, building populations, encouraging business growth and development, providing major new infrastructure and taking advantage of the emerging opportunities of the new economy. Developments in e-commerce and on-

line communications offer exciting opportunities to really break down the tyranny of distance that has been a constant inhibiting factor to Australia's inland development. But it too brings new challenges, notably the potential for job displacement as companies .:

move to the new economy and substantially change traditional work practices. These are the issues for the new century.

Report by the Commission

Pam Ad minist ration

The National Party should give priority to internal membership communication and education to ensure policies and initiatives are communicated effectively.

The National Party commits itself to continually working towards understanding the opportunities and challenges that come with the changing nature of who we are, what role we play in national economic and social development and how we are affected by change. The National Party recognises that such commitment is necessary if we are to

develop policy that champions the future we want.

The National Party seeks to develop such policies through being comprehensively informed and responding to grass roots non-metropolitan Australia.

Recommendation

That the National Party is constituted of Australians who believe in the fundamental

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need for a dynamic prosperous and viable rural and regional Australia and to that end recommends:

a.The abolition of the current tax zones and the replacement with new taxation arrangements that support industries in rural and regional Australia:

b.Guaranteeing the delivery of social and health services tailored equitably to the needs of each community under the banner of "what can be done locally is best done locally".

c.Ensuring the development and maintenance of a comprehensive infrastructure (roads, rail, communications, health and educational services etc)

d.lnnovations in research and information gathering for decision making by government, business and community regarding non-metropolitan Australia.

Economic

The National Party should seek to create a taxation climate to encourage economic and social development in rural and regional Australia. It will advocate abolishing the current tax zones and replace them with a new taxation arrangement that advantages people and business people and businesses in rural and regional Australia.

The National Party will give priority to reducing imposts on rural and regional industries and services to ensure their long term viability.

Social The National Party should seek to ensure that people living in rural and regional p Australia receive equitable social services (eg health, education, infrastructure and communications).

The National Party believes that individual communities should decide what is best for themselves. A banner "What can be done locally is best done locally" would be appropriate. f The National Party should actively seek to reduce welfare dependency in rural and -

regional Australia.

Vision

The spirit and pride of community be reignited in rural and regional areas by the National Party to counter negative perceptions and despondency.

The National Party recognises the importance of youth as central to reigniting community spirit.

Party Administration

The National Party should give priority to internal membership communication and education to ensure policies and initiatives are communicated effectively.

Wrii^en and author sed for the Net^enal Party '7Y P Davey, t.evel 5, 30 Carrington St, Sydney NSW 2000 r CUpynt ht 2000 N.=s[f )i'.ci Party l?` : Jstr al - NNNS\V

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Convention Commission

Information technology - opportunities and challenges Chairman: Hon Peter McGauran MP Minister for the Arts and Centenary of Federation

Minister representing the Minister for Communications and Information Technology in the House of Representatives Facilitators Mr Paul Neville MP

National Party Whip Chairman - Standing Committee on Communications, Transport and the Arts Chairman - Policy Committee on Communications, Information Technology, Arts and the Centenary of Federation

Mr Simon Swan - B Info Tech Information Technology Manager

Introductory Summary

The information technology (IT) revolution is already upon us and there are major changes and innovations being announced each day. This rapid advance in technology brings with it many opportunities for remote and rural Australia as we gain access to new communications methods and more and more information is made available via the

Internet. Satellite phones are quickly expanding to fill the significant void in the older communications technologies and the costs are coming down. The tyranny of distance is quickly being eroded. However, that distance has also insulated many communities from change and helped preserve the lifestyle that makes rural living so unique. With the

new opportunities also come some significant threats, in particular to small businesses, which must be considered by rural communities. While the technology brings goods and services closer to every Australian, we must ask ourselves who is actually offering these services and is it being done at the expense of our traditional business sector? As a

political Party, we need to look past the immediate issues that are currently dominating the communications debate. Issues such as basic access to communications services, and the cost of that access, are quickly being addressed. We must plan strategies on how we live in the new on-line world with new technologies (such as Interactive Digital Television) after the access issues are solved and assess what impact this will have on the way we live, work and play.

Writte n and authorised for the National ParIjr by P Davey, Level 5, 30 Carr ngton St, Sydney NSW 2000 c C,1;ay n ght 20013 N tio; a. • . Party o f A::tr is - NSW

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Convention Commission

Sustainable production from a fragile land Chairman: Hon Warren Truss MP Minister. for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry

Facilitators Hon Ian Causley MP Member for Page Chairman - Standing Commi ttee on Environment and Heritage Senator Sandy Macdonald

National Pa rty New South Wales

Introducto ry Summa ry

Australians are an unique people living in a unique land. Ours is the world's driest inhabited continent. It has some of the world's oldest and least fertile soils, and most of us live on its coastal f ringe. Over the past 200 years we have become efficient producers of agricultural commodities which contribute greatly to our export income and domestic economy. But in recent decades we have come to realise the impo rtance of

sustainable land management to ensure we maintain our productive capacity. The '80s saw the birth of the Landcare movement - individuals voluntarily working together to tackle common problems like soil degradation through wind and water erosion, salinity, water quality, and the loss of native vegetation and habitat.. A major initiative of the

National Party in Government after 1996 was the creation of the Natural Heritage Trust -the biggest financial commitment to the environment by any government in Australia's history - with $1.5 billion over six years. But what direction should we take in future? This is a hot topic nationally, and led to the release last year of a detailed public

discussion paper on natural resource management, which prompted over 500 submissions. These will help'the Government - in consultation with the States, land-owners and community groups - in the vital task of developing a national policy on managing Australia's natural resources - its soil, water and vegetation.

^^ ^ NSW the ^ .:: -,. t 5 .30 Ci t, Sydney Written andr?^iini)('i 'G forii e: t^t^:;^^!c3i Party y Pi^c7- Davey. l.£'V^';) J.^J vrlfrinCjiCiil .^7 - ^ .) F.,y N 2000 © Copyri ght 2000 Nationai Party n` Anstraha - NSW

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Convention Commission

Australia and the Kyoto Protocol Chairman: Hon Tim Fischer MP Member for Farrer Facilitators

De-Anne Kelly MP Member for Dawson Mr David Russell RFD, QC

Senior Federal Vice-President

Introductory Summary

The Kyoto Protocol was developed at an international summit on global warming in Kyoto, Japan, in 1997. Under the protocol, industrialised countries that are signatories have committed to targets to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. Australia agreed to limit its greenhouse emissions to no more than eight per cent above 1990 levels by the year 2012. While that might not appear too ambitious, it has wide reaching

ramifications for all Australians. As one way of meeting the targets, the Government is currently looking at a new system of Federal approval for all new mining, gas and energy production facilities that are likely to generate more than 500,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide or its equivalent each year. Australia must also consider methane emission levels in the overall equation and the potential impact on livestock industries.

Should producers have their livestock numbers capped, should they plant more trees, to what extent can Australia develop and benefit from new farm and plantation forestry and trading in carbon credits, is carbon credit trading a viable option or alternative for land holders? The National Party, through this Commission, is taking a leading role in

developing the debate. Australia must develop a comprehensive long-term plan now to give future investment certainty for its mining, energy, farming and manufacturing industries. It must develop a long-term strategy if these sectors are to continue as the primary export earning and job creating sectors of the Australian economy.

Written and authorised for the National Party b y' P Davey. Level 5. 30 Carr ncton St, Sydney NSW 2000

(i Copvriy tt 2000 Na'iorl ii try of Austratia - NSW

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