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Tuesday, 12 September 1972
Page: 692

Knitted Goods-

Until 31st December 1973 - 45 per cent or, if higher $1.30 per lb From 1st January 1974 - 45 per cent

Woven Shirts -

Until 3 1st December 1973 - 40 per cent plus $1.50 per dozen From 1st January 1974 - 40 per cent.

These are the long term rates recommended by the Tariff Board and which the Gov ernment accepted in the expectation that satisfactory voluntary restraints would be achieved.

The Government reiterates its firm intention that the more efficient sectors of the Australian knitwear and woven shirts industries should continue to operate on a viable basis. The present action reflects the Government's policy that, if tariff action is to lead to any phasing out of any segment of an industry firms would not be expected to adjust overnight and that special care will be taken relating to changes that might have the effect of putting job opportunities for Australians at risk.

The Government is taking an active part in current international moves that could affect the long-term position of the textile industry. There is considerable uncertainty in the international trade situation in textiles, and a study group under the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade is preparing a report which is scheduled to be completed by the end of December 1972. In addition multilateral negotiations have been suggested under the GATT in 1973. Both of these developments could have an important bearing on the future situation of the textile industry both in Australia and overseas, and the Government will maintain close liaison with the Australian industry on the implications of these developments for the industry. The Government has decided to look at the situation again during 1974, in the light of developments within the Australian industry and overseas.

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