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Tuesday, 15 October 1974
Page: 1713

Senator LAWRIE (QUEENSLAND) -Mr President,my Party does not oppose the Australian Tourist Commission Bill. Possibly we have some little misgivings about it in the sense that we would not like to see the Australian Tourist Commission grow to have an absolute monopoly in the tourist field to the exclusion of the existing State and local authority organisations and private people who promote tourism in various parts of Australia. The Commonwealth Banks Bill is designed to enable the Commonwealth Development Bank to provide finance for tourist facilities. The Minister for Agriculture (Senator Wriedt) in his second reading speech said:

Most operators in the industry seeking development finance are experiencing difficulty in obtaining new funds on satisfactory terms, particularly for smaller undertakings in remote areas, and the proposed legislation is designed to help alleviate these problems.

We think that that is very commendable and should be encouraged. But I should like the Minister for the Media (Senator Douglas McClelland) to elaborate a little on the following passage which appears in the second reading speech:

The amendment to section 72 will also empower the Development Bank to provide advice and assistance to tourist enterprises.

Does this mean that the Bank will set up a new department for the purpose of providing advice? I presume that the assistance will be financial assistance as well as other assistance. Subject to that, we have no opposition to the Bill and we support it. But I should like a little explanation of that point.

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