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Thursday, 14 November 1974
Page: 2396

Senator JESSOP (South Australia) - When Estimates Committee A discussed this Department the Minister for Customs and Excise (Senator Murphy) will recall that I asked a few questions relating to the procedures adopted when examining imported brandies. He undertook to get the information for me. I have received a letter from the Minister, through Senator James McClelland, the Chairman of Senate Estimates Committee A. I propose to read the letter for the benefit of the record and perhaps pose one or two questions after doing so.

Senator Murphy - You can seek to incorporate it.

Senator JESSOP - I think the information is interesting.

Senator Primmer - Another filibuster.

Senator JESSOP -I do not want to filibuster. I will read the letter in part and then seek leave to have the whole of it incorporated. The letter states that 4 shipments of brandy are at present detained; that 86 cartons of Austrian brandy are detained at Port Adelaide; that 15 cases from Portugal have been detained since November 1973 in Sydney; that 250 cases ex-France have been held in Melbourne since 12 September 1974; and that 2 cases ex-Portugal are held in Fremantle.

I also asked questions concerning the effects of the increase in excise on the sale of brandy in Australia. I received the following information in the letter:

In answer to Senator Jessop's second question 1 have obtained the following statistics for Australian brandy cleared for home consumption and the duty paid thereon in the years ended 3 1 August 1973 and 3 1 August 1 974:

In the Budget of 2 1 August 1973 the excise duty on brandy was increased from $3 per litre of alcohol to $6 per litre of alcohol. This was further increased on 23 July 1974 to $8.55 per litre of alcohol.

The figures given above show that the volume of clearances in the year 1973-74 fell by 23 per cent but the revenue from brandy increased by 53 per cent.

I seek leave to have the letter incorporated in Hansard.

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