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Thursday, 15 August 1912

Senator MILLEN (New South Wales) . - I want to point out that Senator McGregor destroyed his argument by the statement with which he followed it up. First, he affirmed that the more we put in the more we shall limit the scope of the Act, and then he said that everything which Senator Chataway contended for is already provided. If it is, then the words proposed to be added cannot limit anything. If, on the other hand, their insertion would limit, their exclusion would shut out what Senator Chataway desires to have included. The amendment cannot include and shut out at the same time. Is it right, by giving publicity to a chemical process, the result of the observations of years, to take away from a man that which may be the very essence of his business? The unfairness of such a proceeding is recognised by the Bill, because it exempts from disclosure what is termed " any secret process of manufacture." But that is not the whole thing to be considered. We must have regard for the good- will of a man's business. It will be tantamount to the destruction of his business if he is required by a Commission to disclose his methods of production. It certainly ought to be provided here that if a man is compelled to place information before a Commission it shall be submitted privately, and shall not be made public, and by reason of that publicity placed in the hands of trade rivals.

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