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Wednesday, 13 September 1972
Page: 802

Senator KANE (NEW SOUTH WALES) asked the Minister representing the Treasurer, upon notice:

(1)   What is the extent of foreign investment in all major industries, including those of mining, automotive manufacture, appliance manufacture, food manufacture, advertising and other areas of industry normally necessitating large capital investment.

(2)   What is the value of the assets owned in Australia by these foreign companies and the names of the principal companies involved in the ownership of such assets.

(3)   What is the amount of monies obtained by way of loan by these companies (a) from Australian institutions, (b) from the Australian public, and (c) by way of overdraft facilities from Australian banks.

(4)   What is the value of the properties occupied by these companies on lease-back arrangements with Australian-based development companies.

(5)   What is the amount of monies remitted by these companies to their parent companies overseas, by way of service agreements for services ostensibly rendered to the Australian subsidiary company and also in respect of contractual obligations of the parent companies.

Senator Sir KENNETH ANDERSON (NEW SOUTH WALES) (Minister for Health) - The Treasurer has provided the following answer to the honourable senator's question:

By way of preface, the Commonwealth Statistician has advised that only a limited amount of the information requested is available from statistics collected by the Bureau of Census and Statistics.

(1)   Some information on the degree of overseas participation in Australian industry is available in studies relating to the manufacturing industry and the mining industry the most recent of which refer to years 1966-67 and 1968, respectively. These results are contained in 3 statistical bulletins (ref. nos 12.19, 12.20 and 10.42) copies of which are available in the Parliamentary Library. I have also arranged for the Statistician to send copies of these publications to the Honourable Senator. Information on the degree of foreign ownership and control of Australian industry is also discussed on pages 21 to 27 and 138 to 140 of the Treasury Economic Paper No. 1 'Overseas Investment in Australia' which was tabled in the House of Representatives on 16th May 1972 by the Treasurer.

(2)   Statistics of the annual inflow of direct overseas investment in Australian companies, classified by industry, an analysis of the capital structure of Australian subsidiaries of overseas companies, and information on the net liabilities of Australian branches of overseas companies to their head offices are contained in the 'Annual

Bulletin of Overseas Investment' (ref. no. 5.20). The latest Bulletin, for 1969-70, is available from the Parliamentary Library and the bulletin for 1970-71 is expected to be published shortly. A copy of the 1969-70 bulletin has been sent to the Honourable Senator. Information on the industry of overseas investment is also considered on pages 20 to 21 of the Treasury Economic Paper.

No statistics are compiled by the Statistician in respect of the value of all assets owned in Australia by the companies in question, nor is the Statistician able, under the Census and Statistics Act, to disclose any details in respect of individual companies.

Information in respect of manufacturing industry is, however, contained in the publication of the Department of Trade and Industry entitled Directory of Overseas Investment in Australian Manufacturing Industry 1971'. A copy of that publication is available in the Parliamentary Library and a copy has been sent to the Honourable Senator.

(3)   to (5) Specific information on these matters is not available.

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