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Thursday, 11 May 1972
Page: 1597

Senator LAUCKE (South Australia) - I would like to express gratification for this Bill which will provide a guarantee for a loan to Papua New Guinea. The amount involved, $3. 8m, is not insignificant. The money will be of real assistance to this emerging country in its own right. 1 am very proud to note what has been achieved in Papua New Guinea by Australia and its governments through the years. I think that we have a record of achievement in Papua New Guinea which is a source of gratification and pride. We have achieved there something that is acclaimed throughout the world as being an operation which has assisted the indigenous people mightily.

We have the best of relations with the peoples of the Territory. Our record has not been one of exploitation of the peoples, as has been suggested by Senator Keeffe and refuted by Senator McManus. I think that great benefit has accrued to the local peoples from the investments that have been made in Papua New Guinea Certainly, there could be individual instances and situations which could be regarded as untoward and unfortunate. But on the whole - I want to stress this point - we have a proud record in that country, lt is good to see the good feelings that exist now. I wish this young, virile and emerging country well in its future development. I hope that for many generations ahead we shall have close and happy associations with Papua New Guinea, as we have had in the past. I have pleasure in supporting this Bill.

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