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Wednesday, 1 December 1971
Page: 3939

Mr N H Bowen (PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES) (Minister for Foreign Affairs) - I move:

Omit - '"Part IV. - Predatory Pricing and Monopolisation (.Sections 3S-36).'

This amendment is consequential upon the vote which we have just taken, the result of which had the effect of taking Part IV out of the Act.

Amendment agreed to.

Clause, as amended, agreed to.

Clause 37 (Agreements between competitors containing certain restrictions).

Mr CONNOR(Cunningham) ©.56) - I move:

At the end of the clause add the following subclause: (6.) Every examinable agreement shall be deemed unlawful until the contrary is proved and shall not be put into operation until the Trade Practices Tribunal has declared that it is net contrary to the public interest.'

The reason 'for moving this amendment is elementary. Here we have a remarkable dichotomy under an Act of Parliament. As I stressed earlier in the debate, the 1965 Act was an instrument of delay and frustration. This year as the result of a public outcry in respect of resale price maintenance the Government crumbled completely and accepted the principles that we had advocated some 6 years ago. These were that any examinable agreement should itself be illegal per se and that if a person thought that an agreement was a restrictive one and had then obeyed the precepts of the Act and registered it, automatically the onus would fall oh the person seeking to profit by the agreement to prove that it ought to be exempt. That being so, what answer in logic has the Government to our proposal? It has not any. We can expect that we will get nothing but insolence and complete silence on it. Mr Chairman, may we have a little quietness?

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