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Tuesday, 10 July 1906

Mr THOMAS (Barrier) . - I desire to bring under the notice of the PostmasterGeneral a matter relating to the postage of opals from Australia to America. I am informed by the Post and Telegraph Department that we cannot send opals through the post to a greater value than £10. I have been informed by the opal buyers at White Cliffs that while they are unable to send opals from Australia to America by parcels' post to a greater value than £10, thev can send them to England to a much higher value. The people at White Cliffs are extremely anxious to develop in America as well as in Germany a trade in opals. I understand from what I am told, that they are hindered in that respect now. They are very anxious, however, that the American market should be open to them. I have already made representations to the Post and Telegraph Department with reference to this matter, and I understand that the fault does not lie with Australia, but that it is a regulation of the American Postal Department that opals to a greater value than ;£io cannot be sent there from Australia. I wish to know whether the Postmaster-General is prepared to make representations to the American Government in order that opals may be sent through the parcels' post direct from Australia to America in the same wav as they can be sent via England to America?

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