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Tuesday, 22 November 1910

Senator FINDLEY (Victoria) (Honorary Minister) . - The Leader of the. Opposition desires to secure uniformity in the matter of these duties. But in order to achieve his purpose, he wishes to make the duties as low as possible.

Senator Millen - On raw materials which cannot be manufactured in Australia.

Senator FINDLEY - In other words, the honorable senator would prefer duties of 15 per cent, and ro per cent, upon all the trimmings enumerated in this request as against 25 per cent, and 15 per centHe says, in effect, that whilst there may be difficulties in the way of departmental officers differentiating between certain kinds of trimmings, he does not desire to do an injustice to those persons who are engaged in a particular line of business. Neither do the Government nor the Department. But it is doubly difficult for the Department to differentiate between certain classes of trimmings and trimmings which are beingmanufactured in Australia. A little while ago Senator St. Ledger asked where trimmings are being manufactured in the Commonwealth. From inquiry, I have since ascertained that they are being manufactured in Melbourne and Sydney. Because they are being manufactured in Australia, we wish to give the industry as much encouragement as possible. .Under the present Tariff they enjoy a protection of 15 per cent, and 25 per cent.

Senator St Ledger - Those rates do not apply to ribbons and galloons.

Senator FINDLEY - We do not desire to do an injustice to an Australian industry. In some of the States the importers probably get ribbons and galloons- admitted at the lower rate of duty, whilst in other States they have to pay the higher rate. In Victoria the practice has been for the Department to insist upon payment of the higher duty whenever a doubt has existed in respect of any article. But that rigidity has not been observed in other States. We desire uniformity in order that all may be placed upon the same plane.

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