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Thursday, 25 October 1973
Page: 1456

Senator POYSER (VICTORIA) -Has the Minister for Primary Industry seen reports in this morning's Press that Mr Noel Hogan, President of the Australian Farmers Federation, has claimed that farmers have been fooled and deluded by the Country Party and that he has declared himself in opposition to the Country Party's stand against the Industries Assistance Commission? Where do Australian farmers stand on the establishment of the Commission?

Senator WRIEDT - I certainly did see that news report. In fact, I was a guest of the Australian Farmers Federation at the function referred to in the Press report. I do not imagine for one moment that Mr Hogan 's comments are any reflection of any thoughts which I may have expressed because I think that Mr Hogan can speak in his own right. I think it was an extremely significant statement because it is quite apparent to me, from the discussions I have had, that the average Australian farmer is becoming more and more concerned about the long term viability of his industry. This is his first consideration, and it is fortunate that this is the line along which the present Government is operating. I do not really know what the average Australian farmer thinks about the Industries Assistance Commission, but I would be very surprised if he supported the line which is being taken by the Country Party because the Industries Assistance Commission will ensure that the support given to the Australian farming community will be completely justified and warranted.

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