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Tuesday, 23 August 1983
Page: 34


Mr JOHN BROWN (Minister for Sport, Recreation and Tourism, Minister for Administrative Services and Minister assisting the Minister for Industry and Commerce)(4.56) —I move:

Customs Tariff Proposals Nos 3-9 (1983) and Excise Tariff Proposals No. 2 (1983 ).

The proposals I have just tabled relate to proposed alterations to the Customs Tariff Act 1982 and the Excise Tariff Act 1921. The proposals formally place before Parliament. As required by law. Tariff alterations made by Gazette during the recent recess. Excise Tariff Proposals No. 2 increases the rate of excise duty on motor spirit and diesel fuel by 1c per litre from 1 July 1983 in compliance with section 8 of the Australian Bicentennial Road Development Trust Fund Act 1983. Customs Tariff Proposals No. 3 operative on and from 17 June 1983 implements the decision taken following a report by the Industries Assistance Commission that gelatin from Brazil be excluded from developing country preference.

Customs Tariff Proposals No. 4 contains tariff alterations arising from the Government's decision on recommendations contained in the Industries Assistance Commission report on the Australian tobacco industry. The decision involved the introduction of composite rates of duty, comprising ad valorem and specific duty elements, for certain manufactured tobacco. Proposals No. 4 is operative on and from 24 June 1983. Customs Tariff Proposals No. 5 operates on and from 1 January 1983 and contains two tariff changes. The first change amends the relevant reference in the New Zealand rate Schedule of the Customs Tariff Act to reflect the intention of the superseded New Zealand-Australia Free Trade Agreement that certain leather jackets from New Zealand be granted duty free entry. The second change inserts item 49 in Part I of Schedule 4 to the Customs Tariff Act. This new item implements the Government's decision to provide duty free entry of certain imports required for approved Australian industry participation programs including defence offsets programs.

Customs Tariff Proposals No. 6 operates on and from 1 July 1983 and contains a variety of tariff alterations, the main ones being:

The creation of five new tariff items in Part I of Schedule 4 to the Customs Tariff Act. New items 50 to 54 are necessary for the operation of the Government 's decision to introduce the commercial tariff concession system.

An increase of 1c per litre in the surcharge on imported motor spirit and diesel fuel. This change is complementary to the increase proposed in the Excise Tariff Act and is in accordance with the provisions of the Australian Bicentennial Road Development Trust Fund Act.

An amendment of section 27 of the Customs Tariff Act and deletion of section 28 of that Act. Various changes have also been made to items 5 to 10 and item 15 in Part I of Schedule 4 to the Customs Tariff Act. These measures follow a review of the concessional tariff treatment available to goods imported by non- diplomatic trade commissioners, by international organisations and by visiting servicemen of the United Kingdom, New Zealand and Canada.

Proposals No. 6 also contains a number of miscellaneous amendments to specify correctly the duty treatment, the wording or the coverage of various tariff items. Customs Tariff proposals No. 7 contains tariff changes to bring under quota certain footwear having a value of less than $1 per pair. These changes arise from the Government's acceptance of a recommendation by the Textiles, Clothing and Footwear Advisory Committee. Proposals No. 7 will operate on and from 1 September 1983 but were gazetted earlier to enable the preparation of tender quota arrangements.

Customs Tariff Proposals No. 8 contains tariff changes following the Government 's decision on a Temporary Assistance Authority report on fluorescent and filament lamps. The decision imposes an additional temporary duty of 10 per cent on certain filament lamps. The proposals also incorporates decisions relating to developing county preference for filament and fluorescent lamps and the continued exclusion of Taiwan Province from developing country preference on fluorescent lamps. These changes became operative on and from 13 July 1983.

Customs Tariff Proposals No. 9 contains tariff changes relating to the Government's decision in respect of recommendations contained in an IAC report on non-electrical absorption-type refrigerators and freezers and parts. The decision broadens the terms of a tariff sub-item to incorporate non-electrical domestic refrigerators and freezers and parts therefor. The decision makes these goods subject to the rates of duty applicable to electrical refrigerators and freezers and parts therefor. In accordance with arrangements under the closer economic relations agreement the New Zealand rates on non-electrical goods will phase to free on 1 July 1987.

Proposals No. 9 also covers decisions taken in relation to IAC reports on sodium and potassium alkylxanthates-developing country preference; and power transformers-developing country preference. The decisions exclude from developing country preference sodium and potassium alkylxanthates from the People's Republic of China and Yugoslavia; and certain power transformers from the Republic of Korea and Taiwan Province. The changes in Proposals No. 9 have operated on and from 5 August 1983. A summary of alterations contained in these proposals has been circulated for the information of honourable members. I commend the proposals to the House.

Debate (on motion by Mr Ruddock) adjourned.