House of Representatives
12 March 1902

1st Parliament · 1st Session



Mr. Speaker took the chair at 2.30 p.m., and read prayers.

page 10877

QUEENSLAND ELECTIONS

Mr L E GROOM:
DARLING DOWNS, QUEENSLAND · PROT; LP from 1910; NAT from 1917; IND from 1931; UAP from 1934

– I wish to know from the Prime Minister if the statement which is attributed to the Premier of Queensland by the press, that the right honorable gentleman sent the honorable member for Herbert to the northern portions of that State, and the honorable member for Maranoa to the south-eastern portions, to fight for his policy in connexion with the recent legislation passed by this Parliament in regard to Pacific Island labourers is correct.

Mr.BARTON. - I did not see the statement in the newspaper this morning; but it was brought under my notice by. a member of the press about one o’clock to-day. I need not assure honorable members that I have not in any way interfered in the State elections of Queensland, and that I did not invite any member of this Parliament to take sides in that election.

Mr Watson:

– The two honorable members who have been mentioned were sent for by the local organizations.

Mr BARTON:
Minister for External Affairs · HUNTER, NEW SOUTH WALES · Protectionist

– Everything that I have said upon the subject of the Queensland elections - and it is very little - has been published in press interviews. If he is correctly reported, I cannot understand how the Premier of Queenslandcame to make such a statement.

Mr McDonald:

– It is a Tozer. In Queensland they know what that means.

Mr BARTON:

– No statement was ever originated or circulated by any public man haying a sense of self-respect which was so far from the truth as this is.

page 10878

COMMONWEALTH PAYMENTS

Mr SYDNEY SMITH:
MACQUARIE, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT

– I understand that considerable delay has taken place, in connexion with the payment of contractors, more especially for work done in connexion with the Postal department. I shall be glad if the Treasurer will give his personal attention to the matter, and see that these men are not put to further loss and inconvenience.

Sir GEORGE TURNER:
Treasurer · BALACLAVA, VICTORIA · Protectionist

– There should be no delay in paying Commonwealth accounts. These accounts are paid by the various departments, and as soon as advances are asked, for by the officers of those departments they get the. money. I have heard a good deal of these complaints generally, but no specific instance has been brought under my notice. If the honorable member will furnish me with specific cases, I shall have them investigated at once, because I am of opinion that the Commonwealth should pay its accounts promptly.

Mr SYDNEY SMITH:
MACQUARIE, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT

– I understand that the trouble has occurred through there being no money available to meet loan expenditure;

Sir GEORGE TURNER:

– If there has been delay in paying, accounts, it is probably in connexion with works which have been carried out by the States. When we took over the departments, it was on, the understanding that the States, if they thought fit, should continue and complete works already begun, and that their expenditure upon such works should be taken into consideration when the valueof the properties transferred to the Commonwealth is being determined. With regard to works carried . out by the Commonwealth, I have, where they are represented to be urgent, made; provision for payment out of my advance account, and in such cases there should be no delay.

page 10878

QUESTION

PUBLIC HOLIDAYS

Mr SAWERS:
NEW ENGLAND, NEW SOUTH WALES

-Isit the intention, of the Commonwealth Government to proclaim St. Patrick’s Day a public holiday? The State Government of NewSouth Waleshas done so, and. I should like to know if the Prime Minister can see his way to do the some?

Sir John Quick:

– I make a similar request on behalf of Victoria.

Sir Malcolm McEacharn:

– We shall want St. Andrew’s Day proclaimed a public holiday next.

Mr BARTON:
Protectionist

– The proclamation of public holidays, is a matter which must be determined according to some principle, and months ago the Government came to the conclusion that where a day is specifically named as a holiday in State, Acts providing for holidays it should be observed by the Commonwealth, so far as their departments in the State concerned were affected. But St. Patrick’s Day is not namedin the New South Wales Bank Holidays Act, though, the Act empowers the State Government to, proclaim holidays in addition to those named in the Act. In Queensland, St. Patrick’s, St. George’s; and St. Andrew’s Day are all named as holidays in. the schedule to theAct.

Mr Watkins:

– What about St. David’s Day?

Mr BARTON:

– St. David’s Day is not mentioned ;perhaps because therehas never been a Welshman in a Queensland Ministry.

Mr Watkins:

Sir Samuel Griffith is a Welshman.

Mr BARTON:

– If we consentedto proclaim holidays beyond those named in the legislation of a State, whenever a State Government didso, we should beentirely in the hands of the, State Governments. Therefore, when holidays are proclaimed in the discretionary exercise of the power given to the State Governments; we have not thought, it right to adopt, them as a matter of course. While there are three saints’ days named as holidays in the Queensland Act, no saint days are mentioned as holidays in the legislation, of any of the other States, and I find that the Premier of New South Wales has stated that the observance of St. Patrick’s Day next week is to be optional, and that over 300 of the principal business establishments in Sydney therefore intend to. keep, open on. that day, their, decision doubtless affecting the action of hundreds of other similar establishments. That being so; we should probably cause grave disappointment and inconvenience to thoseengaged in transacting, the mercantile and, commercial business of the State, if we proclaimed the day a public holiday, and closed the post-offices and Custom-house.

Sir William McMillan:

– They have gone holiday mad. in New South Wales.

Mr BARTON:

– That is a matter upon which I shall not express an.opinion, but I think that the Commonwealth Government should take its own course in regard to public holidays, except where; by courtesy, it adopts those named in the legislation of the States. Where public holidays are named in the legislation of a State, it is practically certain that nearly all the business establishments in that State will close on those days, and therefore it would not be worth, while to keep open the. Commonwealth, departments for the small amount of business that, would be transacted. The principle of which I speak has been observed ever since we laid it down, some months ago. In Queensland the position is different. There, St. Patrick’s Day is named as a public holiday, in the State Act, and therefore the public offices will be closed. In the other States there is no reason for preventingthe transaction of business by closing the Commonwealth offices.

page 10879

QUESTION

IMMIGRATION RESTRICTION ACT

Mr McDONALD:
KENNEDY, QUEENSLAND · ALP

asked the Minister of External Affairs, upon notice -

  1. How many coloured immigrants have been Admitted into the Commonwealth since the passing of the Immigration Restriction Act ; what wasthe number of those admitted who passed the education test ; and what wasthe number of thosewhowere refused admission ?
  2. Have any coloured immigrants been admitted into the Commonwealth other than those who have passed the education test; if so, how many, andwhencedid they come, andwhat were the reasonsfor their admission ?
Mr BARTON:
Protectionist

– I intend to immediately lay upon the table two returns, giving the information for which the honorable member asks. Since the passing of the Immigration Restriction Act, on the 23rd December last, the number of aliens admitted into the Commonwealth, has been 378; while the number admitted during the first two months of 1901 - as nearly as possible the corresponding period of last year - was 810, or more than twice as many, and this in spite of the fact that we have respected the permits issued by State Governments, both in regard to the immigration of Japanese into Queensland, and in. other regards - as where persons had changed their position, by booking through passages, or by leaving, their homes, before the date of myspeech upon the second reading of the Bill, on the 7th August last.

page 10879

QUESTION

POSTAL OFFICIALS’ LEAVE AND SALARIES

Mr HENRY WILLIS:
ROBERTSON, NEW SOUTH WALES

asked the Minister representing the Postmaster-General; upon notice -

  1. Whether it has been, the custom, among the lower paid officers of the Post and Telegraph Department, to allow two months’ leave to accumulate before applying for leave of absence.?
  2. Whether it is a fact that, under a new arrangement, officers entitled to two months’ accumulated leave are given but one month’s leave of absence ?
  3. Whether due notice was given to officers before putting the new arrangement into operation ?
  4. Whether it is a fact that assistant postmasters of six years’ standing are paid a salary as low as £110 a year ? 5.Whetherit is the intention of the Government to increase the salaries of officers in the Post and Telegraph Department; and, if so, when ?
Mr BARTON:
Protectionist

– The answers to the honorable member’s questions are as follow -

  1. Leave of absence is generally controlled by regulations under the Public Service Acts, and these are not uniform in this respect. Leave is always given in accordance, with the regulations, and not as a matter of custom. 2 and 3. The Postmaster-General is not aware of any new arrangement with, respect to accumulated -leave.
  2. There are no “assistant postmasters.”
  3. Increases to the salaries of officers in the Post and Telegraph department have been provided on the Estimates, and will be paid when the Estimates have been passed by Parliament.

page 10880

PAPERS

Mr. BARTON laid upon the table the following papers : -

Return of coloured immigrants admitted to the Commonwealth since the passing of the Immigration Restriction Act.

Return showing number of coloured immigrants admitted to the Commonwealth during the first two months of 1902.

page 10880

TARIFF

In Committee of Ways and Means :

Consideration resumed from 11th March (vide page 10854).

Division XV. - Musical Instruments.

Item 120. - Musical instruments n.e.i., and pianos, parts of, n.e.i. ; musical boxes, pianolas, and other attachments or articles for rendering music by mechanical process, and metronomes, advalorem,1 5 per cent.

Sir GEORGE TURNER:
BalaclavaTreasurer · Protectionist

– I move -

That the words “and pianos, parts of, n.e.i.,” be omitted.

I propose to deal with the parts of pianos after we have fixed the duty to be levied upon pianos. There has also been a question raised with regard to instruments for bands, and at this stage I may say that I would not object very strongly to reducing the duty upon band instruments to 10 per cent.

Amendment agreed to.

Item, as amended, agreed to.

Item 121. - Organs, pipe, ad valorem, 20 per cent.

Agreed to

Item 122.- Pianos, viz. : -

Grand and semi-grand, each, £12 and 15 per cent. , ad valorem.

Upright, each, £4 and 15 per cent., ad valorem.

Sir GEORG E TURNER:
Treasurer · BALACLAVA, VICTORIA · Protectionist

– This is a very important item, which deserves consideration at our hands in order that we may do justice all round. I feel that it will not be wise to adopt an ad valorem duty in this case, and we are advised very strongly by our officers that we should have a fixed rate - the importers themselves ask for the same thing - with the object of preventing frauds such as have been committed in the State of Victoria, and possibly in other States, in connexion with under-valuations. In addition to this it is the desire of the importers, and it ought to be the desire of all of us, to shut out what are called shoddy pianos - articles that look very well, but are of little or no use. We ought to encourage the importation, as far as importations are to take place, of the better class of instruments, and prevent the German garret-made instruments from being introduced here. I admit that some of the German instruments are among the best, but at the same time many of them are very inferior. I propose to test the feeling of the committee as to whether we should not in this instance levy a composite duty. A fixed duty alone would press very heavily on the lower class articles, and would not bring in a sufficient amount of revenue from the more valuable instruments. Therefore, instead of adopting a high fixed duty it is better to have a somewhat lower duty fixed, and an ad valorem duty which will work in conjunction with it to keep out the lower grade article, and will enable us to collect a certain amount of revenue from the higher class instruments. So far as the protective incidence of the duty is concerned we know that very large importations take place from Germany. In Canada, and America the piano-making industry has, by virtue of the protection extended to it, become very large indeed, and if we can afford a reasonable amount of protection to local makers we shall probably develop a valuable industry within the next few years. The great trouble of course is the prejudice entertained against Australianmade instruments. People will insist upon, having pianos made by firms well-known in the musical world ; but so far as we can gather the pianos made within the States at the present time are well constructed and good instruments. They are made to some considerable extent in New South Wales, and they are, or will be, manufactured largely in South Australia. I have a letter from a well-known firm of solicitors who are acting for certain people who are prepared to establish the industry in Victoria if a fair duty is imposed. The only fear that they have is that the duty may be taken off after being in operation for a short time. They desire to have a guarantee for seven years, but of course we could not possibly undertake to say that there will be no alteration in the duty within that period, although I think that it will probably be retained. A considerable amount of labour is employed in the manufacture of pianos, and also in the making of the parts that have to be constructed here. We do not wish to impose a duty that will. merely induce people to import the parts and put them together here. I omitted the words relating to piano parts from item 1 20 in order that we might make the parts subject to the same duty that we decide, to impose upon the finished instruments. I propose to except the small action work, which should come in free in the interests of those who are manufacturing the pianos locally. Circulars have been sent out both by the importers and the local manufacturers of pianos. The circular issued by the importers contains a number of figures which have been checked by the officials of the . Customs department, and it is evident that they are considerably exaggerated. They were probably calculated on the old basis when we used to charge for packages and other things, and I am sure that the figures are larger than they ought to be. ‘ From all the inquiries I have made, I believe that if a fair amount of protection is granted we shall not only encourage the development of the industry, which has already been established in New South Wales, but promote similar enterprises in the other States. We shall then have internal competition and competition from outside as well, and we need entertain no fear of monopoly or a large increase in the price of the instruments. I believe that the proposals made by the Government will best attain the objects that we have in view.

Sir WILLIAM McMILLAN:
Wentworth

– The Treasurer has evidently determined to conquer or die in the last ditch. The committee has set aside the Government proposals for composite duties in every case, except in that of cigars, and he is now seeking at the last moment to secure the application of the principle in regard to an item which does not differ essentially from those in which the composite duties have been abandoned. Some strong influence appears to have been brought to bear upon the Treasurer during the last few days, and his present attitude is absolutely inconsistent. He has told us that serious frauds have been committed in connexion with the importation of pianos under ad valorem duties, and that, therefore, a fixed duty should be adopted. Now he proposes an ad valorem duty of 15 per cent, in addition to a fixed duty. I do not see any difficulty in applying an ad valorem duty to pianos. It is as easy to check invoices for pianos as for anything else. The

Treasurer has laid some stress upon the importance of keeping out the commoner class of instruments ; but experience has shown that the effect of imposing these high duties is to encourage the importation of an inferior article. Until recently, a certain firm in Sydney imported a well-known make of German pianos, which, I believe, were very good, and which were sold at moderate prices. Some week or so ago, a person whom I know made inquiries with the view of having one of these pianos imported for him ; but the importers told him that since the duties had been imposed they had been compelled to give up the importation of that particular make, and to substitute a commoner article. Fixed duties must always operate in this direction, but in the case of an ad valorem duty, the charge is equitably distributed over all classes of instruments. I think that this industry ought to be treated fairly. This morning we had the advantage of reading in one of the foremost journals in Victoria a leading article, which was written entirely with a view of inducing the imposition of a high duty upon pianos for the sake of one particular firm in Sydney. But I think that if pianos can.be manufactured in a free-trade country, anything can be manufactured there. The very fact that this rather intricate and difficult manufacture has been conducted for years in an absolutely free-trade community affords most conclusive proof of the success of that fiscal policy. I do hope that this committee will not stultify itself at the last moment. In reference to articles which fluctuate very materially in value, we have already decided that wherever that value can reasonably be ascertained, the principle to be applied to their taxation shall be that of ad valorem. In this connexion, I would point out that pianos range in value from £15 and £20 to £200 and £300. Therefore, we ‘have an infinite variety of prices presented to us, to which the principle of a fixed duty is not applicable. Moreover, it is not difficult for the Customs authorities to determine the value of a piano if zeal be always exercised to prevent the presentation of false invoices. I think that the committee ought, in the first place, to decide the question whether a fixed duty or an ad valorem rate should be adopted in the present instance. To put the matter in order, I move -

That the words “ and on and after 13th March, 1902, ad valorem “ be added.

Mr POYNTON:
South Australia

– I was hopeful thatwhen theTreasurer made his statement, he would advance some reason why such enormous duties have been imposed upon pianos. Before I sit down I think I shall be able to show that the Government proposals cannot be justified either on the ground that these instruments are luxuries, that the rates which it is sought to levy will be productive of revenue, or that they constitute anything in the nature of a compromise, having regard to the duties which formerly operated under the various State ‘Tariffs. I recognise that some honorable members areapt to be led away with the idea that pianos are a luxury. ButI wouldask whether we ought not to discriminate between a l uxury of this character and a luxury in the shape of jewellery, upon which we have already imposed an ad valorem rate of 25 per cent. ? I would further point out that the manufacture of jewellery affords employment to a large number of people within the Commonwealth, whereas one man only is interested in the manufacture of pianos. Moreover, the natural protection enjoyed by jewellery represents from 5 to 7½ per cent. only, whereas the natural protection enjoyed by pianos averages about 42 per cent. Why has the duty which previously operated in the various States upon this class of instruments been increased by 50 per cent ? If the proposed duties are intended to be protective in their incidence, is it a fair thing - seeing that there is only one firm in Australia engaged in the manufacture of pianos - to levy a tax which represents 70 per cent., taking into consideration the measure of natural protection which they already enjoy ? By adopting such a course, is there not great danger of building up a monopoly 1 I do not regard a piano as a luxury ; if it is, it is one that I should like to see in every man’s home. I believe that if pianos were more generally in use they would be the means of preventing our young people from frequenting the streets late at night. The proposal of the Government seems to me a remarkable one. No State has done more than has Victoria to encourage our young folk to become accomplished in music. This State has establishedconservatoriums, which offer prizes in the shape of bursaries, to those who excel in musical attainments. It holds its annual Eistedfods, and in connexion with its literary societies and A.N. A.competitions, a knowledge of music occupies a prominent position. It is all very well for the Government to declare that the imposition of the proposedduties will lead to the local manufacture of pianos. It will be years before suchan industry can be established.

Mr.Mauger. - There will be a factory established in Victoria in less than two years, if the proposedduties are levied.

Mr POYNTON:

– I would point out to the honorable member that for years past therehas been a duty of £15 each upon the large class of pianos imported into Victoria, and a tax of £5 upon the smaller instruments. Yet not one manufacturer hasbeen induced to embark in the industry in this State. It is remarkable that free-trade New South Wales is theonly State in which an attempt has been made to manufacture these instruments: Seeing that hitherto Mr. Beale has been able to successfully manufacture pianos in a free port, he ought to experience no difficulty - if given the benefit of a moderate duty and with the market of Australia open to him - in considerably extending ‘his business. It may be argued that this industry is not in such a flourishing condition as it should be. I admit that in its initial stages it had a somewhat chequered career, but if any reliance can be placedupon Mr. Beale’s recent balance-sheets the industry has now becomefirmly established. Last year this particular firm were credited with a profit over working expenses of 50 per cent. ; in other words they earned £7,800 on a capital of £15,000. Is it the object of this Parliament to penalize people who show special aptitude for music? It costs a parent a large sum to musically educate a child; yet we have imposed a duty of25 per cent. on music, while allowing illustrated midnight horrors of the “ Deadwood Dick “ variety to come in free. Is it desired to reserve music as aluxury for wealthy people ? We ought to have regard to the fact that children who are educated in music and become proficient, devote much of their time and ability to raising money for charitable purposes ; and it is unreasonable to deprive gifted people ofthe opportunity of purchasing instruments at reasonable prices. What was the luxury of yesterday is the necessity of to-day,as is shown by the whole trend of oureducational system. Vocal music is taught in the Stateschools, and who can say that we shall not arrive at a stage when instruction in instrumental music will he imparted ? We have -also ito consider those who become -teachers of music, and it is certainly not a fair thing to’-impose a high prohibitive duty for the purpose of encouraging these particular manufacturers, though I have no objection to encouraging .them, df it be not done at the expense of the whole community. The Treasurer has said that those engaged in the trade have asked for a fixed duty, but I have a circular signed by manufacturers in Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide, and Perth, and, while it is true that they desire a duty of £15 -on grand pianos, and £4 on upright pianos, they also ask as an. alternative for a duty of 15 per cent.

Sir George Turner:

– In a letter which I have- here the trade say ‘of pianos - “ It is the earnest and unanimous wish of the trade to have a fixed duty.” The 15 per cent, refers to other instruments.

Mr POYNTON:

– In South Australia the duty was 15 per cent.- on all classes of instruments ; in Victoria, it was £15 and £5 ; in Tasmania, 20 -per cent. ; in Queensland, £12 and £6 ; -in Western Australia, £15 and £5 ; and in New South Wales, pianos -were free. If the duty, as proposed by the Government ‘be carried, an instrucinvoiced at £23 will pay £8 7s. 8d. “Sir George Turner. - -The proper amount is £7 10s. 7d.

Mr POYNTON:

– I presume my informant has paid the amount he mentions. The natural -protection amounts to £9 17s. 9d.; so that, on the Treasurer’s own figures, the protection on an instrument invoiced at £23 will amount to £18. I ought to add that the natural protection on a higher class instrument will be something like £15. In order to show how unfairly the Government proposal will work out, we have only to observe that on an- upright piano, invoiced at £16, the - duty will amount to 41 per cent.; on a medium piano, invoiced at £19, the duty will be ‘37J- per cent.; and on the highest class of uprights, invoiced at £40, the impost will be 26J per cent. People who of necessity buy cheap instruments, will have to pay more duty in proportion. On grand pianos, invoiced at prices ranging from £45 to £90, the duty, on the lower priced instruments, will amount to 43 per cent.; and, on the higher priced, to 30 per cent. The port charges on upright or cottage pianos amounts to 42^- per cent. ; so that “we have charges equivalent. ‘to over

SO per cent, on the cheaper classes of instruments. So-far as I understand the proposal of the Government, all the -material -except frames and the outside -casings -are- admitted free.

Sir George Turner:

– I do -not think that is so.

Mr POYNTON:

– I have -my information on the best authority. All the parts connected with the action, including keys, key -frames, strings, and articles of that sorb come in free.

Sir George Turner:

– No; but actions, strings, felts, and hammers should befree. Ivories and veneers are already free,, and I intend to propose that the formerarticles shall also be free.

Mr POYNTON:

– I am dealing with “what is already in the Tariff. Felts and cloth are admitted free, if cut in strips, and actions and keyboards are also free” if put together ; but “where these materials come separately, as they are “required to do for repairing purposes, they are dutiable. The most intricate parts of the instrument come in free; and under the proposal of the Government the whole, with’ the exception of “frames and -case work, will be imported from Germany. In fact, the particular firm to which reference has already been made, advertise from whom these “parts are purchased in Germany. We are, therefore,, establishing high duties ‘practically for thepurpose of enabling articles, which are made elsewhere, to ‘be put together in Australia.

Mr Mauger:

– As a matter of fact, the maker asks for duties on the parts.

Mr POYNTON:

– Another revelation! Tt is a wonder he does not ask for the abolition of a duty ‘upon %the finished article..His tactics, however, are not the usual tactics of a business nian ‘who ‘knows thathe has an absolute monopoly, and will haveno competition to fear for a number of yearsto come. I trust “that “the committee will -make the duty an ad valorem one, abd not fix it so high as the duty upon articles of luxury, such as jewellery. I do not regard a musical instrument -as a luxury, and the “musical education of our ‘people ‘is a thing which we should try to -encourage. ‘The honorable member for Melbourne Potts would, no doubt, like to place a duty of 100 per cent, upon pianos ; but temperance advocates are “generally the most intemperate men one comes across.

Mr MAUGER:
Melbourne Ports

– I hope that the time will soon come ‘when every one will be in the position to satisfy his desire for musical recreation ; but the remarks of the honorable member would lead one to believe that there are no such things as pianos in Canada and America, because of the high duties there. In the United States there is a duty of 40 per cent, upon pianos, and a prominent citizen of this country, who wrote to me recently from America, says -

What struck me most in the suburbs of the large cities of America was the fact that nearly every home possesses either an organ or a piano, andyou will be glad to know, made in America.

In Canada there is a duty of 30 per cent, upon pianos ; but I believe that pianoplaying is part of the ordinary curriculum of the schools there. At any rate, there is a strong agitation to make it so. The pianos in use in Canada, however, are almost exclusively made in the country. Will the Literary Society of Ballarat be put to serious inconvenience if a reasonable duty is placed upon pianos?

Sir William McMillan:

– The honorable member’s idea of a reasonable duty is a prohibitive duty.

Mr MAUGER:

– I am not now advocating a prohibitive duty. What I want is a duty sufficiently high to give the Australian workman the command of his home market. Surely a poor man can get as good and as sweet music from a home-made piano as from a piano made in Germany ; but if a man must have a German piano, he can afford to pay the duty upon it. Two-thirds of the pianos imported into Australia come from Germany.

Sir Edward Braddon:

– Do they not make excellent pianos in Germany?

Mr MAUGER:

– They make excellent soldiers there; but my right honorable friend would not think of joining the German army. We hear a great deal about loyalty, but, where our Australian workmen are concerned, honorable members are always ready to throw up their hats in praise of the Germans and the Austrians. We shall probably have to fight the Germans some day, and let us begin by fighting them in the industrial world. A New South Wales advertisement, which I have here, and which states that flannels are cheaper now than they were under free-trade, shows that duties are not passed on to the consumers.

Mr JOSEPH COOK:
PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT; ANTI-SOC from 1906; LP from 1910; NAT from 1917

– Has the honorable member got down to proving his case by advertisements ?

Mr MAUGER:

– It is more than an advertisement ; it is a trade circular which has been sent to a large number of retail houses. With regard to the argument that the piano-making trade here really means only the putting together of parts, a circular has been issued which says -

With regard to the proposed duty on parts n.e.i., 15 percent., we respectfully request that this be 33 per cent. , as the putting of the parts tog ether is but of small cost, and already steps have een taken to import the parts separately, put them together, and thus avoid the payment of the piano duty.

Every line in that circular is subscribed to by the New South Wales manufacturer. He is anxious that a duty should be put upon parts similar to that upon the finished article. He says that he has a factory which is sufficiently equipped to make, not only the pianos, but nearly every part contained in them.

Mr.F. E. McLean. - Why, they cannot do that in the American factories !

Mr MAUGER:

– Then all the more honour to the Australian manufacturer who can do it. I am of opinion that Australian pianos are as good as any that are made in Germany, and I am the more pleased to advocate this duty, because it will assist a New South Wales industry.

Mr Wilks:

– Which did very well under free-trade.

Mr MAUGER:

– Yes ; but it was established under the Dibbs Tariff, and it has been continued in the belief that the Commonwealth would give it a reasonable amount of protection. Even the importers admit that there should be a duty on pianos, and if their proposals are compared with those of the Government, taking into consideration the very different points of view of the two parties, it will be seen that the Government proposals are exceedingly reasonable. But is it fair to the manufacturers to refuse to give them any higher duties than those asked for by the importers ? Does it not stand to reason that if the importers are prepared to accept these duties they must know that their business is not likely to be interfered with ? Music Trades, the leading New York music trades’ journal, in its issue of 16th November, 1901, says -

When asked what effect the change in the Tariff would make in the export of American pianos to Australia, New York manufacturers, whose instruments are sold there, said that it is not likely to cause any falling off in sales.

A very considerable number of American pianos are imported into the Commonwealth, and the attitude of the manufacturers of the United States shows that the Government proposal is a reasonable one. I hope that in the interests of Australian industry, Australianworkmen, and Australian music, the committee will adopt the composite duties.

Sir EDWARD BRADDON:
Tasmania

– In the interests of Australian music I take a view quite opposite to that of the honorable member for Melbourne Ports. The honorable member advances most curious arguments, and has given usan example of his eccentricity in his references to German pianos. These are largely used because of their superiority. The Germans have introduced the iron-frame system of construction, and other mechanical improvements, which have added to the usefulness and stability of the instruments and have led to their extensive use. It must be conceded that pianos have a humanizing and improving effect in the homes of our people. We are proving that we are among the nations in which song and music are very strongly dominant forces, and the more we can encourage these elements and make the homes of our people happy, the better for the people and the better for the State. The honorable member for Melbourne Ports has spoken of the great benefits that have accrued to Canada from the imposition of a duty upon musical instruments. In Canada they have imposed a duty of 30 per cent., which is considerably below the rates which the Government propose. The Government would have acted more reasonably if they had followed Canadian lines, and still better if they had taken example from New Zealand or Tasmania.

Mr Mauger:

– They do not make any pianos in Tasmania.

Sir EDWARD BRADDON:

– They make as many as are made in Victoria, and proportionately use more of them. I hope the committee will take a reasonable view of this duty, and will entirely ignore all protectionist considerations. The industry of piano making has been carried on in New South Wales under free-trade conditions, and no protection is needed. In the interests of common sense and of the revenue, I would urge the adoption of a small ad valorem duty, which would fall equitably upon all classes.

Mr. BATCHELOR (South Australia).I intend to support the adoption of the ad valorem principle. Pianos are articles which vary greatly in price, and as the cheaper instruments are used by persons with small incomes, it would be unfair to impose a fixed duty upon all pianos irrespective of value. I would urge the Treasurer to accept an ad valorem impost of 20 per cent, which would be a fair rate of duty for revenue purposes, and would afford the local manufacturers as much protection as they would be entitled to in view of the consideration extended to those engaged in other branches of industry.

Mr JOSEPH COOK:
PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT; ANTI-SOC from 1906; LP from 1910; NAT from 1917

– We have not had any sound reasons advanced for the adoption of composite duties. The arguments used by the Treasurer against ad valorem duties on the ground that they lend themselves to fraud, apply equally to the composite duties, and either the Treasurer has not proved enough or he has proved too much. The honorable member for Melbourne Ports told us that importers of pianos will not be affected by the imposition of these duties, and in the same breath expressed the opinion that within two years large factories will be established in Victoria. Why have these factories not been established before this ? There was nothing to prevent their establishment prior to the introduction of the Tariff, and if, as the honorable member states, importations are not to be interfered with by these duties, no special encouragement will be offered to local manufacturers if the Government proposals are adopted. I do not regard the ordinary cottage piano as a luxury, consequently it ought not to be taxed as such. I believe that if it is not an absolute necessity, it is a very great one. Art culture in connexion with our industrial life is just as necessary as is ordinary industrial education, and it will become increasingly so as competition grows keener and human ingenuity as applied to mechanical science becomes more acute. I do not think that we should regard every little embellishment in the home of the artisan as a luxury. Indeed it is most difficult to accurately define the meaning of that term. Very often luxuries are a matter of environment and circumstances. For example, a blanket would constitute a luxury at the North Pole, whilst ice would constitute one at the equator. A piano in the cottage of an artisan who is removed from the civilizing influences of the city should be regarded not as a luxury, but as an absolute necessity. I would further point out that nearly all the pianos imported into Australia are -of a modest order. Last year, for example, Victoria imported only -39 grand pianos, as against 4,000 cottage instruments. Clearly, therefore, we need not tax the latter class-of pianos to reach the rich ‘man, who wants a musical instrument of a very high order. The cost of the importation of these instruments ought in itself to constitute a sufficient protection to Australian manufacturers. We are told that the cost of importing an ordinary cottage piano, which is invoiced ;at £30, is £10. Thus the measure of natural protection enjoyed by the manufacturer of such an instrument is 33 per cent. I have yet to learn that that does mot represent a -sufficient margin to compensate for the difference which exists between the wages paid in Germany and Prance and those ruling in Australia. The elaborate circular which Mr. Beale has issued to honorable members upon the opposite side of the Chamber, contains two or three statements which, in my opinion, give his case away. For example, he admits that he can manufacture a superior article to the imported piano for the price charged for- the latter. Where then is the necessity for giving -him protection? I -should like to observe in passing that this gentleman turns out both very excellent pianos and sewing machines. According to his own circular he can manufacture pianos with advantage to himself. The size of his works, as indicated in the sketch at the -head of the circular, affords the ‘best proof of how he has prospered under a free-trade policy. He says -

The statement -has been frequently made to us that we cannot successfully manufacture pianos in Australia, because,of the high wages of workmen, and because of their independence and unreasonableness. As to the former argument, we hold that because people earn good wages they are able to buy our pianos.

Honorable members will note what ‘an admirable free-trade argument follows : -

Our artisans, ore much better paid than those of Europe, -and even than those of America. True, they work shorter hours, but they work well, and take a personal pride in .turning out creditable ‘goods, which ill-paid and half-fed men are not likely to do.

That is a splendid free-trade proposition. Honorable members upon this side of the Chamber are constantly asserting that high wages do not necessarily mean a high cost of production, and it is ‘beyond cavil ‘ that such wages -can he associated with a very low cost of (production. Mr. Beale also admits the .accuracy -of a statement contained in the circular of the . agents of foreign piano manufacturers, that the average .duty under this Tariff upon the upright pianos which were imported into Victoria during 1901 would represent 62per cent. That is a great admission for a man in Mr. Beale’s position >to make.

Mr Salmon:

– This is a quotation from a statement by a foreign -manufacturer.

Mr JOSEPH COOK:
PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT; ANTI-SOC from 1906; LP from 1910; NAT from 1917

– Exactly ; but since Mr. Beale adopts it for -the purpose of making a comparison between ‘pianos manufactured by himself and those which are imported, he must believe it to be correct. He goes on to say that a piano - which is invoiced abroad at £29, costs £9 17s. for importation, and -pays duty to the amount of £8 7s. 8d. - ‘its landed price in Australia being £47 4s. 8d.- is being made ‘at his factory for £40. Mr. Beale, in his letter, says -

A specimen of our pianos is in Parliament House. Our .retail price is £40 -for a similar instrument - -action, materials, and workmanship - with plainer case. On comparison with the German article, ours will be found superior.

It will be seen that Mr. Beale says that he can make for £40 an instrument superior to that which costs £39 2s. ; and as he has been competing for many years under a freetrade policy, I cannot see the basis for his present appeal to this committee. The honorable member for Melbourne Ports says that there is to ‘be no diminution in the importations.

Mr MAUGER:

– I did not say that.

Mr JOSEPH COOK:
PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT; ANTI-SOC from 1906; LP from 1910; NAT from 1917

– But Mr. Beale says that he requires this duty in order that, by shutting out importations, he may supply his allegedly superior pianos. In combating the idea that he has prospered, Mr. Beale goes on to show that he at one time combined importing with his manufacturing business, and he says -

All the time the cost price of our goods was higher than that at which we still continued to import similar goods. We finally ceased importing, because, though dearer, the quality of the Australian article is indisputably, higher.

Here we have a strange confusion of ideas as to value. When <a person wants to buy a piano, he considers the price, not by itself, but in connexion ‘with the value of the instrument; and the value determines the price. Mr. Beale admits in his circular that prices have already been raised by reason of this duty, so far as the imported articleis concerned ; and thatis a statementof actual fact to which I should like to draw the attention of the Minister for Home Affairs and the honorablemember for Melbourne Ports. Here we have Mr. Beale, with charming simplicity, telling us that, in regard to pianos, he is going to be the one and only philanthropist ; but he ought not to try to impose on our credulity in that way. We take him to be a keen business man, who trys to get as muchas possible for his goods ; and, although the duty has not as yet been added to his prices, it is abundantlycertain that it will be if importation be restricted.

Mr Salmon:

– Importers have raised their prices.

Mr JOSEPH COOK:
PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT; ANTI-SOC from 1906; LP from 1910; NAT from 1917

– Importers have to do that, but they would not do so if they thought such a step would injure their business. Importers, acting on business lines, withsafety and prudence, will continue to selltheir articles, and Mr. Beale will also be bound sooner or later to add the duty to his price. The fact that he has not done so as yet isonly proof of his good sense; he wants a big duty and does not desire to do anything to prejudicehis case. But Mr. Beale also tells us that itdoes not now pay him to make his instruments, and says that the cost of his goods is higher than that at which he imported similar, goods ; in other words, he says that his industry is not a paying one. If that be so, and he does not increase his prices, it cannot be long before he will be in the Insolvency Court, unless protectionists assist him in his philanthropic business. Mr. Beale, however, will have to “ paddle his own canoe,” as other men ‘have to do, and it would have been well for his case had he omitted those contradictory statementsfrom his circular. Cottage pianos ought to bear a fair revenue duty of, say, 15 per cent.; but we ought not to look on these instruments as luxuries. The duty proposed by the Government will not make any difference to the welltodo man, but will fall withcrushing effect on the poor man ; and I am afraid that some honorable members haveerroneous ideas as to what are luxuries, in connexion with musical instruments at any rate, and are of opinion that while a grand upright piano is right enough for a rich man, a Jew’s harp is good enoughfor apoor man. It is good to make available to every man the means of embellishing hislife with music, and of giving his children the means of cultivating their higher faculties, the result of which will react on our industrial and national life.For these reasons I hope the composite duties will be abolished.

Sir EDWARD BRADDON (Tasmania). - I only rise to make a short explanation on the subject of the Canadian duties on pianos. The duty appears in the Canadian schedule at 30 per cent., but owing to the fact that there are preferential rates for British manufactured goods, the duty on these goods is only 20 per cent.

Sir George Turner:

– That applies to a number of other articles in the Canadian Tariff.

Mr.SALMON (Laanecoorie). - No article in the Tariff presents a better subject than pianos for the imposition of a composite duty. I do not care about such duties in their general application ; but there are certain articles which are used by the community, and which are of such varying money value and varying actual worth in regard to durability, that it would be well if a number of them were kept altogether out of consumption. Yesterday we had an opportunity of dealing with a number of articles of exactly similar character. In America certain vehicles are produced at an extremely low price, and sent to various parts of the world. I have seen some of those in use, and after use, in Australia, and I find they are manuf actured from materialwhich is not altogether suitable for this climate. Exactly the same argument applies to a number of low-priced pianos which are imported from the Continent of Europe. I know Victoria from end to end, and the honorable member for Parramatta surprises me when he says that therewere 4,000 cottage pianos imported into the State last year. The majority of pianos in use in Victoria are upright instruments, and not cottage pianos, the latter term, in its general acceptance, having regard to size rather than to shape. These instruments, weare told, are imported and sold at about £25, and if the honorable member for Parramatta is serious in his desire that the musical education of the masses should be assisted, he ought to vote for a considerable composite duty. He should vote for a substantial fixed duty tobeginwith, inorder that the masses may not have palmed off upon them an inferior instrument which, in our climate, will shake to pieces within twelve months. If the honorable member for Parramatta, and those who agree with him, really desire to assist the musical education of our people, they cannot do it more effectually than by preventing the importation of cheaply made jimcrack instruments, which tend rather to demoralize the splendid musical taste which they undoubtedly possess than to develop it. No one can become a good piano player unless he has a decent instrument to play upon. Probably no articles are imported into the Commonwealth upon which a larger profit is made than is made upon pianos. The instruments are manufactured very cheaply, especially in Germany, and the large demand for them - which is greatly owing to the fact that the inferior instruments go to ruin and have to be replaced by new ones - enables the agents and importers to charge very high prices.

Mr JOSEPH COOK:
PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT; ANTI-SOC from 1906; LP from 1910; NAT from 1917

– A working man could not afford to pay £40 for a piano.

Mr SALMON:

– The working man who pays £25 for the instruments to ‘ which I refer will find at the end of a year that his money has been absolutely wasted. I have not the honour of Mr. Beale’s acquaintance and I have not read his circular until today ; but I was surprised and pleased at some of the statements in it, and more especially at the statement that nine-tenths of the material in his pianos is produced in Australia. I understood the honorable member for South Australia, Mr. Poynton, to say that the parts were all manufactured in Germany, and were merely put together here.

Mr Poynton:

– The action is imported from Germany.

Mr SALMON:

– The accessories to which the honorable member refers are an inconsiderable part of the whole instrument. The honorable member for Parramatta has made a strong appeal for what he calls the embellishment of the artisan’s home with musical instruments ; but we, on this side, appeal for duties which will give the artisan the means of earning his livelihood - a much more important thing.

Mr F E McLEAN:
LANG, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT

– That is what the duties have not done. They have driven people out of Victoria.

Mr SALMON:

– For one person who plays the piano, there are hundreds who can only listen to piano-playing by others.

In the circular to which I allude, we have evidence of the establishment of an industry, which bids fair to capture the home market, and. to give employment of a remunerative character to our people. It is pointed out that a patent has been invented which any one who has had to do with pianos, especially in the country districts, knows is a very valuable one.

Mr JOSEPH COOK:
PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT; ANTI-SOC from 1906; LP from 1910; NAT from 1917

– We give all credit to the inventor for his discovery.

Mr SALMON:

– By preserving the home market for local manufacturers, we shall stimulate the ingenuity of our own people, and this will probably lead to the invention of further improvements. The probabilities are, that if there had been no piano factory in Australia, the particular invention to which I alluded would never have been discovered, because the want of ii would not be brought before the inventor. It is pointed out in the circular that the pianocases which are made here are carved by hand, while those imported from abroad are carved largely by machinery. Wood-carving is an avocation which can be taken up by people who are unable to follow more arduous employments, and thus this industry offers assistance to persons who find themselves no longer able to engage in employments which tax their physical endurance to the utmost. I do not suppose that any large number of men will find occupation in the carving of piano cases, but the work will give employment to some, and means of education to more.

Mr G B EDWARDS:
SOUTH SYDNEY, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT

– Is there not an old-age pension system to provide for persons who are unable to earn their own livelihood ?

Mr SALMON:

– I have always been a strong advocate of the old-age pension system, but I think it is still better to find employment for our people, so that, no matter what their age or condition, they can earn their living.

Mr THOMSON:
North Sydney

– I rise to urge upon the Government the abandonment of the proposed composite duties ; but I shall not enter into many of the arguments which have been so well put forward by those who are ‘endeavouring to obtain a lower duty. Of course, it is hopeless to expect the committee to agree to the admission of pianos free of duty. The honorable member for Laanecoorie declares that his desire is to provide work for the artisans of Australia. Honorable members on this side of the House have exactly the same desire, but we find that work has- been provided in connexion with this industry not in the protected States, but under free-trade conditions in New South Wales.

Mr Salmon:

– Only in connexion with importations.

Mr THOMSON:

– No, not only in connexion with importations, but in the manufacture of the instruments. The factory in New South Wales is turning out hundreds of pianos. As to the idea of the honorable member for Laanecoorie of turning exhausted coal-miners into wood-carvers, .ill I can say is if that is part of the policy of protection it is a very poor policy indeed, and I do not wonder that the adoption of protection has had the effect of driving people away from Victoria. Surely all the arguments are in favour of either a low duty or no duty at all. The industry has existed for years without a duty. Every credit is due to the manufacturer who has succeeded in establishing the piano-making industry in Sydney. His success affords evidence that brains and energy will overcome any natural difficulties that may present themselves. This manufacturer has stated, in reply to an interviewer, that although a protectionist and of opinion that free-trade was unjust, he did not care, so far as his manufacturing was concerned, whether a duty was imposed upon pianos or not.

Mr Mauger:

– He absolutely denies that.

Mr THOMSON:

– In the course of the article, from which I have just quoted, the writer says -

The output of the factory is said to be over 500 pianos a year. The industry does not consist merely of putting together imported parts. The pianos are genuinely manufactured on the premises at Annandale. Only the keyboards and the actions are imported, and pianoforte* makers do not usually make their own keyboards and actions. Their manufacture are subsidiary and separate industries. The actions for the locally-made pianos are manufactured by Iserman, of Hamburg, a maker of high standing.

Mr Salmon:

– Those instruments were not manufactured at a profit.

Mr THOMSON:

– Then the object of the duty is simply to compel the public to pay higher prices for-their pianos.

Mr Salmon:

– No, not that; but to afford the manufacturers a larger market.

Mr THOMSON:

– That advantage has already been given by the abolition of Inter-State barriers, and the sole object of the protective duty is to enable the manufacturers to charge higher prices. If we admit, for the sake of argument, that some duty should be imposed, we have to consider how far we ought to go in that direction. Proposals for composite duties have been rejected by the committee in connexion with items to which they might have been applied far more appropriately than to pianos. In the case of vehicles, for instance, it was urged that composite duties would have the effect of excluding certain classes of buggies of an inferior, and, therefore, of a dangerous, character. Something might be urged in favour of the composite duties on that ground, but it cannot be said that any particular harm is likely to befall the man who plays upon an inferior piano. On the other hand, thousands of pianos, which have been sold in Australia at £25 each, have lasted for many years, and have afforded their owners infinite pleasure. I know one such instrument that has been played upon for 25 years. These cheap pianos, although they may not satisfy aesthetic ears, tend to make many home circles attractive ; and that is what we need almost more than anything else in Australia. It would therefore be wrong to discourage the importation of cheap pianos, which, although they may not be, perhaps, as good in workmanship, appearance, or tone as the better-class pianos, still last for many years and afford real enjoyment to many thousands of people. The Government proposal will work in the direction of excluding this class of instruments, or of making it more difficult for those with small means to obtain pianos. Under the Government proposal a piano costing £10 would be subject to duty amounting to £5 10s., whilst an instrument valued at £20 would have to bear a duty of only £7, and a £50 piano would be dutiable to the extent of £11 10s. Thus an instrument costing five times asmuch as the £10 piano would be subject toonly’ double the amount of duty. The Treasurer says that his officers inform him that it is not easy to check the invoice values of pianos. If any such statement were made it is absolutely incorrect, becausethe values’ of pianos can be checked even more easily than the value of many articles which are- subject to an ad valorem duty, , and which can only be appraised by the keenest of experts. In spite of his objection the Treasurer asks us to adopt an ad valorem rate as part of the composite duty, and the composite duty is therefore on the ground of difficulty of valuation, as much open to objection as a purely ad valorem impost would be. For the reasons I have advanced,, I hope the Treasurer will abandon, the composite duties, and apply the ad valorem principle to pianos. The honorable member for Melbourne Ports really amuses me. Upon one day he will employ arguments which are diametrically opposed to those which headvances upon another occasion. He urges that a high duty should be placed upon pianos, because of the difference which exists between the wages paid in Germany and elsewhere, and those which are paid in Australia. Yesterday, however, when the committee were discussing the duty which, should be levied upon, vehicles, he declared that the competitor we chiefly had to fear, in that particular line was the United. States. It was no part of his argument then to declare that the wages paid in that country were higher than those paid in Australia; I maintain that any difference between the wages which, obtain, in countries where pianos are manufactured, and those paid, in Australia, is fully compensated for by the cost of carriage. Under these circumstances a lower rate than that proposed by the Treasurer should be adopted, and the composite character of the duty should, be abolished.

Mr WILKS:
Dalley

– The honorable member for North Sydney has. completed, the appeal which has been made to the Treasurer. Of course I can understand why the latter turns a deaf ear to the suggestion, that the composite duty should be swept away. He knows that that form of, duty is a pet one of the. Minister for Trade and Customs, and loyalty to his colleague probably prevents, him from, agreeing towithdraw it, notwithstandingthat the committee have abolished, the composite duties in every case except, that of cigars. The love and attachment of the, Minister for Trade and Customs to these, particular, duties will surely earn political fame for him at the hands of those who deal in musical instruments. If the present proposals of theGovernment be carried, they will probably make him famous by the refrain, “ Composite, Charley, is my name “ I would, further point, out that the piano industry, which has been, established byMr. Beale in Sydney, and. in which higher wages are paid than those obtaining, in Germany, America, and Great Britain, has been built up without any State assistance. That, industry is located in the electorate which I have the honour to represent. Indeed, some of the largest industries in Australia are to be found in that constituency, and it is a compliment to their robustness and enterprise that noneof them, have asked for any artificial aid in the shape of protective duties. I was surprised to learn that the honorable member for Parramatta was in possession of a circular from . Mr. Beale, who did not pay me the compliment of forwarding me a copy, although I am told that these circulars can be picked up in thousands, in the neighbourhood of the Government whip’s room. From Beale and Company’s circular I gather that they have successfully established, their industry and made an enormous profit.

Mr Sawers:

– That is a wild assertion to make.

Mr WILKS:

– Their last balance sheet shows a profit of £11,000 upon, a paid-up capital of £50,000; I am aware that, that profit has not been derived exclusively from the manufacture of pianos, but certainly the major portion, of it has.

Mr Chapman:

– Their capital, is over £100,000.

Mr WILKS:

-That shows, that they were willing to invest even a larger amount than I credited them with in an endeavour to establish this industry in a free trade State. The honorable memberfor Laanecoorie, who is a medical man, amused me very much when he appealed to the committee to be patriotic, and to allow a miner in his old age an, opportunity of finding, employment in themanufacture of pianos. In other words, he asks thatthe miner shall be allowed to exercise his stiff muscles in the manufacture of an article requiring the most deft manipulation. The thing is absurd. I contend that the only effect of this duty will be to give an additional bonus to an existing, industry; at the expense of those who purchase pianos for the purpose of earning, a livelihood. Of course I am aware that, in the time of George III., the capacity to play the piano was regarded as, a great accomplishments. To-day, however, it is an essential, in the studies of almost every youth in the community. Personally I favour, the imposition, of a 1 5 per cent, rate upon these instruments.

In making such an offer I believe that, as a f ree-trader, I am stultifying myself, but that was the duty which, prevailed inSouth. Australia. We have already fixed organs at 20 per cent, ad valorem., and as the question; of the compositeduties has beenfought over and over again, I trust that the Treasurer will give way.

Sir GEORGE TURNER:
Protectionist

– The appeals of the honorable member for Dalley are almost irresistable, and he has several times nearly dragged me over the line. On this occasion, however, I have another reason for giving way, and, it is a reason, which often actuates myfriends of the Opposition. When they know that the numbers are against them they do not persevere ; and on this occasion I happen to know that the numbers are against me, and, in order to save time, I shall agree to an amendment to. omit the composite duties. But I cannot agree to. anything like a duty of 15 per cent. In my opinion 25 per cent, is a reasonable rate.

Mr. WILKS (Dalley). - I am pleased to hear the statement of the Treasurer, andI regard this as a glorious victory for the Opposition, and as another illustration of the usefulness of the free-trade party in obtaining a workable and liberal Tariff I make a further appeal to the Treasurer, namely, that in fixing the ad valorem duty, he will make it as close, to 15 per cent, as possible, seeing that, there is only one firm engaged in manufacturingpianos in Australia, and thatit will be years before another firm can, be in a position to compete. Beale and Company have been in business for eleven years, and we admiretheirenterprise and energy but their business has been conducted in free-trade New South Wales in preference to protected Victoria, and, with a duty of 15 per cent., they ought to do very well in the enlarged market presented by. federation. I would, also urge, the Treasurer to caref ully regard this questionf rom, a revenue point of. view.

Amendment agree to.

Sir WILLIAM McMILLAN (Wentworth). - I am, actuated by a desire to prevent, unnecessary discussion, and as I think, that 20 per cent, is likely to be the duty the committee will vote for - although under allthe circumstances, such a dutyis in my opinion excessive - I move -

That the words “20per cent.” be added.

Mr WATSON:
Bland

– I trust the committee will see the wisdom of accepting the; compromise suggested by the acting leader of the Opposition. This industry has, been fairly established, and we all must give credit to Beale and Company for the way in which they have pushed ahead in the face of all kinds of difficulty. But up to the present this business has been carried: on without any protection, and. a duty of 20 per cent. represents very liberal treatment. This duty will, yield a large, amount from, articles which it is just to tax when we are compelled to go to the Customs for revenue.

Sir MALCOLM McEACHARN:
Melbourne

– In, my opinion a duty of 20 per cent. is quite sufficient. Personally, I should be inclined to give my vote for protecting an industry established in New South Wales, and the course I have endeavoured to pursue, when in doubt as to what a duty should be, has been to support the Victorian impost. But the Government proposal is far and away in excess of the duty previously imposed in this State. I find that the total imports of pianos into Victoria in 1900 amounted in value to £113,000, the duty on which was £24,000.

Sir George Turner:

– The importers were evidently “ loadingup,” because those figures are far above the ordinary import.

Sir MALCOLM McEACHARN:

– That may be. The original proposal of the Government would have meant something: like 55 per cent, on, the Victorian imports of 1900, or a revenue, of £39,380; and these figures in themselvesare an argument in favour of the 20 per cent., duty

Mr Salmon:

– TheVictorian, duty was purely a revenue duty.

Sir MALCOLM McEACHARN:

– It was quite, high enough for a protective duty. If we impose a duty of only 25 per cent., on vehicles, which represent a much moreimportant; industry, we have no right to make the duty on, pianos any higher than, 20 per cent. A large number of these, pianos are used by the poorer sections of the community, the lower class instruments soldi representing somethinglike 80 per cent. ofthe total consumption.

Mr F E McLEAN:
LANG, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT

– I trust the Treasurer will accede, to the request, made, from all parts of the Chamber, to agree to the compromise of 20 per cent. I feel thatas arevenueduty, irrespective of the question of protection,. 15 per cent, would be quite sufficient, and seeing that these manufacturers have not enjoyed any such benefit before, they would consider themselves handsomely treated if this lower duty were imposed. This industry has been carried on with a certain amount of success without any protection, and the suggested compromise, although to my mind too liberal, is so reasonable from a protectionist point of view that it ought to be accepted without hesitation. The honorable member for Melbourne Ports interjected a contradiction of the report of a newspaper interview with Mr. Beale, which was quoted by the honorable member for North Sydney. According to the honorable member for North Sydney the words of the interview were -

Mr. Beale informed us that although a protectionist himself, and of opinion that free-trade was unjust, he did not care, so far as his manufacturing was concerned, whether a duty was imposed on pianos or not.

I have here from the publishers of the newspaper, in which the interview appeared, the words which Mr. Beale himself asked should be added to, or substituted, for those I have read. Mr. Beale’s correction is as follows : -

He would make pianos in any case, but declared that it was in spite of, and not because of, free imports. What he laid special stress on are the fresh opportunities open to him and all other producers by Inter-State free-trade.

That is just the position of free-traders.

Mr Salmon:

Mr. Beale would probably import all the parts, as he did before.

Mr F E McLEAN:
LANG, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT

- Mr. Beale has been manufacturing the iron frames and the cabinet portions of pianos, and I suppose every honorable member is proud of the industry that has been established by that gentleman. So far from showing any desire to ruin an industry of the kind, I think we have exhibited a spirit of compromise in being prepared to accept 20 per cent., which is far and away above any duty which might be imposed for revenue purposes, because a duty of 15 per cent, will be quite high enough for that purpose. There should be no hesitation on the part of the Treasurer in accepting a duty of 20 per cent, for the benefit of an industry which has been able to withstand the competition of the world without assistance, and has now the whole market of Australia to exploit.

Mr WATKINS:
Newcastle

– I intend to vote for a duty of 25 per cent, upon pianos. I do not say that pianos are a luxury in the sense that many other things are luxuries ; but I am of opinion that people can afford to pay higher duties upon articles which they buy only occasionally than upon those which they have to purchase every day. If a person buys an imported piano, and has to pay 25 per cent, duty upon it, he will probably get an article which will last for 25 or 30 years. It is urged that a duty of 25 per cent, is a very high duty, but we have imposed a duty of 30 per cent, upon hats, which people are always buying.

Mr Watson:

– That was because the hat industry was established under protection, and could not continue without it.

Mr WATKINS:

– It is scarcely correct to say that the piano-making industry was established under free-trade, because there were duties in force in New South Wales in 1891 and 1892. Every one who has lived in that State knows that the importers of pianos have enjoyed a great monopoly there, and have been able to obtain very high prices from the purchasers.

Mr F E McLEAN:
LANG, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT

– The auction rooms in Sydney are full of pianos.

Mr WATKINS:

– The time -payment system often makes a cottage piano cost, not £25, but nearly twice that amount, and it is impossible to get a decent instrument for the country without paying £40, £50, or £60 for it. We should either allow pianos to come in free, or place upon them a duty which will lead to their manufacture by our own people, and thus bring down the artificially high prices which have been charged by the importers.’ It has been shown that five out of six imported pianos come from Germany, and it cannot be urged that the labour conditions prevailing there are anything like those prevailing here. This is a big market, and it is one worth capturing. The duties which have been placed upon pianos in the various States have not been tempting enough to induce persons to manufacture them within their borders. In Canada, the duty upon pianos is 30 per cent., and they not only supply their own wants, but have an export trade as well. I agree with those who say that we should develop the musical talents of our people, and I shall always be willing to lend a hand in efforts of that sort ; but I think the music which they get from their pianos will be all the sweeter to them if they know that the instruments were made by their fellow-citizens.

I do not know a great deal about the piano industry of New South Wales, but I know that it has been subjected to great persecution. It has been stated that its profits are earned upon a capital of £50,000 ; whereas we have it on the best authority that nearly £100,000 is invested in the enterprise. That such treatment should be given to an industry says very little for the existence of the spirit of fair competition in commercial circles. I think we ought to be able to make pianos here which will suit our climate better than do those which are sent to us from across the sea. Thepiano-making industry is one which is worth encouraging, and I do not think its encouragement will inflict any hardship upon those who desire to cultivate the musical art.

Mr V L SOLOMON:
SOUTH AUSTRALIA, SOUTH AUSTRALIA · FT

– I am sorry that, notwithstanding the desire expressed by the Prime Minister the other evening to finish the Tariff as soon as possible, so much time has been wasted today by the action of the Government in persisting with these composite duties, which the committee has defeated over and over again. I hope that this will be the last time when such duties will be proposed, because they have been condemned by honorable members in the strongest terms. Now, however, it is agreed that the duty should be an ad valorem one, and we have to consider merely what the rate shall be. Honorable members opposite wish to place a high duty upon pianos, in spite of the fact that they have been manufactured successfully in New South Wales without a duty. The circular issued by the manufacturer himself shows that there is absolutely no necessity for protection. He has hitherto had to compete against importations from Germany and other places upon even terms, but he will now have an extended and protected market. If we give this industry the advantage of a 20 per cent, duty we shall be making a most liberal concession. We have to consider the effect, not only of the ad valorem duty, but of the enormous natural protection afforded by the packing, freight, and other charges upon such bulky articles as pianos. The import charges upon pianos of values ranging from £16 to £20 brought from Germany or America would amount to fully 25 per cent, on the invoice cost.

Sir Malcolm McEacharn:

– Thirty-three per cent.

Mr V L SOLOMON:
SOUTH AUSTRALIA, SOUTH AUSTRALIA · FT

– Even assuming that the charges do not exceed 25 per cent., a 20 per cent, duty would increase the protection to the local manufacturer to 45 per cent. Surely the most ardent protectionist would not require more than that. The Treasurer will do well to bring this matter to a conclusion by agreeing to accept the proposal of the leader of the Opposition.

Mr SAWERS:
New England

– There is very little difference between a 20 per cent, duty and a 25 per cent, duty so far as protective incidence is concerned, and I cannot congratulate the free-trade party upon fighting for a mere 5 per cent. If they were true to their principles they would endeavour to secure the admission of pianos free of duty. The pianomaking industry employs hundreds of people, and is likely to assume enormous proportions. One statement which has been made by Mr. Beale has not yet been quoted. He says -

No pianos are imported into the United States, where duties are heavy, and nowhere are pianos sold more cheaply retail, whilst thousands of very high quality are exported annually. Sixty-one American piano manufacturers have branches in London, yet twenty years ago the hope of adequate home production and export was ridiculed by German agents in America, as German agents in Australia ridicule the idea here now.

Mr. Beale also points out that if the pianos required by Australians were made by Australian artisans, their cash value would exceed £600,000 a year - a large annual distribution in our community. The piano industry appears to be one that is worth doing something for, and I shall support the Government proposal.

Mr CRUICKSHANK:
Gwydir

– I consider that a duty of 20 per cent, ad valorem would be sufficiently high to impose upon pianos. It may be argued that as we have voted in favour of a 25 per cent, duty upon boots and upon vehicles, we should impose a similarly high duty upon pianos, but whereas the bootmaking and coachbuilding industries are carried on to a greater or less degree in almost every country town in Australia, the pianomaking industry cannot assume anything like the same large proportions. On the other hand, I am afraid that if we impose a very heavy duty, we shall encourage monopolies, which would operate to the disadvantage of the people. I think that a 20 per cent, duty would serve for revenue purposes, and that beyond any incidental protection that might be given by such an impost the industry is not worthy of consideration. We shall have to look to Italy and Germany, the great homes of music, for our best musical instruments for many years to come.

Question - That the words “ 20 per cent.” be added - put. The committe divided.

Ayes … … … 27

Noes … … … 21

Majority … 6

Question so resolved in the affirmative.

Amendment agreed to.

Amendment (by Sir George Turner) agreed to -

That the following new item be added - “ Parts of, n.e.i., on and after 13th March, 1902, 20 per cent.”

Amendment (by Sir George Turner) proposed -

That the following new item be added : - “ Military band and orchestral musical instruments, on and. after 13th March. 1902, 10per cent.”

Sir MALCOLM McEACHARN:
Melbourne

– I think that these instruments should be admitted free. In this connexion I would point out that musical instruments for bands are included in the list of miscellaneous exemptions. Most bands are organized for the purpose of playing in the open air, and the proceeds of 95 per cent, of their performances are devoted to charitable purposes. Consequently, I see no reason which would justify us in levying a duty of 10 per cent, upon their instruments. I think that they should be admitted free.

Mr JOSEPH COOK:
PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT; ANTI-SOC from 1906; LP from 1910; NAT from 1917

– I cordially support the remarks of the honorable member for Melbourne. Most men have to undergo a very self-denying ordeal in order to become efficient bandsmen, and many of them are using instruments of which they would gladly dispose, if they could only afford to purchase better articles. The little money which they earn does not nearly compensate them for the expenditure that they incur. We cannot manufacture these instruments within the Commonweal th, and I fail to see any justification for levying a duty upon them.

Mr SKENE:
Grampians

– Personally I feel that to vote for a duty upon any kind of musical instrument is little short of an act of vandalism. Bands render so much valuable service to the public, especially in the country districts, that we should exempt their instruments from taxation. I have in my hand a circular issued by the Victorian Band Association, which contains a few very good points. It directs attention to the fact that; as a rule, bandsmen are recruited from the working classes. A great many of their performances are given for charitable purposes, and honorable members must recollect that their equipment involves a large expenditure.

Sir George Turner:

– As this is a duty from which very little revenue would be derived, I will agree to the suggestion to admit these instruments free, and therefore I ask leave to withdraw my amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

Sir MALCOLM McEACHARN (Melbourne). - I hope that bagpipes will also be exempted fromduty. I would point out that a Scottish regiment has been formed in Victoria and other States, and I am doubtful whether bagpipes are covered by the term “ Military instruments.” I think these instruments should be admitted free.

Mr WATSON:
Bland

– I wish to direct attention to the fact that there are instruments other than those enumerated here which require some consideration at the hands of the committee. For example, there is an instrument which combines the piano and pianola, which, under the present proposal of the Government, will be admitted at a lower rate than is chargeable upon the piano. I am not aware of the technical name of this instrument, but it is worked with a pianola attachment. Is it fair to admit that instrument at a lower rate than is levied upon the piano 1 It is not a musical box, and the value of some of these instruments ranges from £600 to £700.

Sir GEORGE TURNER:
Protectionist

– There is a good deal of force in the contention that the combined instrument should not be allowed in at a lesser rate of duty than the piano, and the only way to meet the difficulty is to move -

That the following new item be added : - ‘ Pianos, whether worked mechanically or otherwise, on and after 13th March, 1902, 20 per cent.”

Amendment agreed to.

Special Exemptions

Musical instruments, parts of, viz. : - Action work in separate pieces.

Amendments (by Sir George Turner) agreed to -

That the words “Action work in separate pieces” bo omitted, with a view to insert in lieu thereof the words “Actions, strings, felts, hammers, and ivories, “

That the following exemption be added: - “ Metal pipes for pipe organs.”

Amendment (by Sir George Turner) proposed -

That the following exemptions be added : - “Military band and orchestral musical instruments.”

Sir MALCOLM McEACHARN:
Melbourne

– I suggest that bagpipes should also be added to the special exemptions. I fancy that under the words “ Military band,” bagpipes would come in free, because there is a band of bagpipes in connexion with every Scottish regiment. It would be unfair to Scotchmen if English musical instruments were admitted free, and

Scottish musical instruments were made dutiable.

Mr O’MALLEY:
Tasmania

– I have pleasure in supporting the suggested amendment of the honorable member for Melbourne. At a great Scottish gathering in America I heard a man say that Scotch music had driven all the Scotchmen to that country, and as they are good colonists, we want them driven to Australia.

Mr Salmon:

– Do I understand that this exemption is limited to instruments for military bands?

Sir George Turner:

– No; that is the technical name for the instruments.

Mr WILKS:
Dalley

– I support the suggestion of the honorable member for Melbourne, though for a reason different from that which he gave. Bagpipes are used in regimental bands for the production of national music, and they ought to be available for every Scottish regiment in the Commonwealth. If we look deeply into this matter we shall find that a tax on bagpipes will be a tax on bravery. Scottish regiments fight bravely in all the campaigns of the Empire, and, by a process of induction, I am led to the conclusion that the members of those regiments would rather meet the enemy than stop behind to listen to the music.

Mr SAWERS:
New England

– I do not think there is any need for the honorable member for Melbourne to press his suggestion, seeing that bagpipes will come within the category of military band instruments. If there is any doubt as to whether bagpipes are a musical instrument, we might add the words “including bagpipes.”

Sir George Turner:

– I am quite willing to include the words “ and bagpipes “ in my amendment.

Amendment amended accordingly.

Sir MALCOLM McEACHARN (Melbourne). - To use the words “including bagpipes “ might be thought to cast a reflection on that instrument. Perhaps we ought to use the words “ also bagpipes.”

Mr. RONALD (Southern Melbourne).This is a case where bagpipes might pray, if they had that power, to be saved from their friends, because it is only turning them into ridicule to add any qualifying term. There is nothing in the wide world more clear than that bagpipes are part of a military band.

Mr.sawers. - And musical instruments?

Mr RONALD:
SOUTHERN MELBOURNE, VICTORIA

– And are musical instruments ; in fact, one set of bagpipes is a whole military band. The traditions of the Scottish people are such that, if we expect them to be fightersand to defend the country, the bagpipes are altogether indispensable. I emphatically protest against there being any invidious distinction such as is involved by the use of the words “ including “ or “ also.” As to there being any doubt about the bagpipes being a musical instrument, I would point out that the fact that a violin is not a musical instrument to a bull is not the fault of the violin, but the fault of the bull.

Amendment, as amended, agreed to.

Exemptions, as amended, agreed to.

Division, as amended, agreed to.

Division XVI. - Miscellaneous.

Item 123. - Bags, baskets, boxes, cases, or trunks, including fittings, viz.: - Fancy, hand, sporting, travelling, picnic, toilet, dressing, glove, handkerchief, collar, and work : satchels, reticules, valises, and companions, ad valorem 20 per cent.

Sir GEORGE TURNER:
Protectionist

– I am particularly anxious that the Tariff should be disposed of, and the Bills relating to the customs and excise duties passed and sent to the other Chamber before the Easter adjournment, in order that the members of the Senate may have an opportunity of studying them during the holidays, and be able to proceed at once with their consideration after the holidays. I do not include the Bonus Bill, because, perhaps, that will be too debatable a measure to allow it to be passed before Easter. I, therefore, ask honorable members to assist me in passing this division to-night. Personally, I shall be glad of a little relaxation, because the pressure upon me has been rather heavy during the last three weeks, and if I have two or three clear days I shall be able to look into the various items which I have promised to reconsider, and to get ready more quickly the figures which I wish to place before honorable members to show what has been the effect of the Tariff upon the revenue. It is only fair, too, that honorable gentlemen, before proceeding to deal with the amendments in the Public Service Bill and the Postal Rates Bill, should have an opportunity to look into those measures. Therefore I shall propose, if we finish this division to-night, to adjourn until Tuesday next.

Sir WILLIAM McMILLAN:
Wentworth

– I understand that the proposal of the Government is to finish the division to-night, and then adjourn until Tuesday next, and that the Tariff is not to be brought up again next week.

Sir George Turner:

– I should like to bringit up again about Thursday next, if that is possible, but I promise not to bring it up before that day, and to give notice on Tuesday of what we propose to do.

Sir WILLIAM McMILLAN:

– I understand further that Tuesday’s and Wednesday’s sittings will be devoted to the consideration of the Senate’s amendments in the Public Service Bill, and to the consideration of the Postal Rates Bill.

Sir George Turner:

– Yes ; and the Attorney-General may introduce the Judiciary Bill, though the debate upon the second reading of that measure will not bo proceeded with.

Sir WILLIAM McMILLAN:

– In that case I think I can promise for those on this sideof theChamberthatif my right honorable friend is in a conciliatorymood, we shall pass the division to-night. I shall do all I can to induce honorable gentlemen to curtail their speeches.

Amendment (by Mr. Conroy) negatived -

That the words “and on and after 13th March, 1902, 15 per cent.” be added.

Item agreed to.

Item 124. - Boats, launches, and yachts imported in any vessel, including all fittings, ad valorem 20 per cent.

Sir WILLIAM McMILLAN (Wentworth). - I find that the value of the boats imported into New South Wales from outside the Commonwealth during the last year for which statistics are available was about £2,000, and that only thirteen boats were imported, five of which came from New Britain. Surely a duty of 20 per cent, is not necessary to protect the boatbuilding industry. I move -

That the words “and on and after 13th March, 1902, 15 per cent. “ be added.

Amendment agreed to.

Item, as amended, agreed to.

Item 125. - Brushware, viz. : - Carpet sweepers, hair brushes and combs (toilet), and tooth brushes, ad valorem 15 per cent.

N.E.I., including brooms, mops, crumb trays and brushes, ad valorem 25 per cent.

Mr CONROY:
Werriwa

– Itseemstome that a duty of 10 per cent, would be quite high enough for carpet-sweepers, hair brushes and combs, and tooth brushes ; but I shall not further discuss it if a 15 per cent, duty upon all brushware is proposed, and if the Treasurer is willing to abolish the distinction between the articles I have named and the articles upon which he proposes to charge a duty of 25 per cent. I think that such an arrangement would save a lot of dispute and trouble at the Custom-house.

Sir WILLIAM McMILLAN (Wentworth). - I would point out to the Treasurer that he is proposing a duty of 25 per cent, on painters’ brushes and artists’ brushes, which are really tools of trade. It would certainly simplify matters, and give less inducement to fraud, to adopt the suggestion of the honorable and learned member for Werriwa. Brooms and mops, upon which a high duty is proposed, are things which are very easily manufactured, and do not require a high protection. There are articles included in the item which should really be on the free list, but for the sake of simplicity I am willing to agree to an allround duty of 15 per cent.

Sir GEORGE TURNER:

– The duty of 15 per cent, upon carpet-sweepers, hair brushes and combs, and tooth brushes, is a revenue duty ; but the duty of 25 per cent, upon all other brushware is a protective duty, which has been put on for the protection of an industry which employs 500 or 600 persons.

Mr Conroy:

– Under the Victorian Tariff some of the articles included in this item came in free; others were charged 10 per cent. ; and others 30 per cent. ; so that an all-round duty of 15 per cent, would be a fair compromise.

Sir GEORGE TURNER:

– In Victoria we did not find it necessary to impose merely revenue duties. I cannot agree to an all-round duty of 15 per cent. ; but if there are certain articles which honorable, members think should be placed on the free list, I am willing to consider their proposals.

Mr F E McLEAN:
LANG, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT

– Will the right honorable gentleman place paint brushes, which are tools of trade, upon the free list?

Sir GEORGE TURNER:

– I do not know about artists’ brushes ; but ordinary paint brushes are made here very largely.

Mr HUGHES:
West Sydney

– The Treasurer proposes a duty of 25 per cent, upon all brushware not specifically mentioned, and therefore that duty will be imposed upon millet brooms. I would point out to him, however, that we have already agreed to a high duty upon millet, and that as there is not sufficient millet grown within the Commonwealth to manufacture all the brooms we require, the makers of these articles will be at a considerable disadvantage. I am with the honorable member for Wentworth in his suggestion that brushes which are tools of trade should be placed upon the free list.

Amendment (by Mr. Conroy) negatived -

That the words “and on and after 13th March, 1902, 10 per cent.” be added to the duty “Carpetsweepers, hair brushes, and combs (toilet), and tooth brushes ad valorem 15 per cent.”

Sir WILLIAM McMILLAN (Wentworth). - I think the duty upon the next line should be reduced to 20 per cent., and that we should afterwards exempt from duty painters’ brushes.

Sir George Turner:

– I am willing to exempt artists’ camel and badger hair brushes because they are not made here.

Amendment (by Mr. Conroy) proposed -

That the words “and on and after 13th March, 1902, 15 per cent.” be added to the duty “ n.e.i., including brooms, mops, crumb trays and brushes ad valorem 25 per cent. “

Mr G B EDWARDS:
SOUTH SYDNEY, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT

– I think that a duty of even 20 per cent, would be rather a heavy one to impose upon the articles included in this line. I do not care much about artists’ brushes, but we should certainly exempt from duty brushes such as those used by house painters.

Mr TUDOR:
Yarra

– I trust the committee will hesitate before reducing this duty, because it is necessary for the protection of the brush-making industry.

Mr. O’MALLEY (Tasmania). - I hope honorable members will recognise that the brush-making industry is a very important one, and that those engaged in it should be protected against foreign competition.

Mr McDONALD:
Kennedy

– I would point out to the Treasurer that hog-hair brushes are amongst the most important of those used by artists.

Amendment negatived.

Amendment (by Sir William McMillan) put -

That the words “ and on and after 13th March, 1902, 20 per cent.” be added to the duty, “n.e.i., 25 per cent.”

The committee divided.

AYES: 19

NOES: 21

Majority … … 2

AYES

NOES

Question so resolved in the negative.

Amendment negatived.

Item agreed to.

Item 126. - Coke, per ton 4s.

Mr KIRWAN:
Kalgoorlie

– I should like to know why this duty is proposed. Prior to the introduction of the Tariff, coke was admitted free into all the States excepting Queensland, where a duty of 25 per cent, was levied. The Government cannot expect to derive any revenue from this duty, and it certainly cannot have any protective incidence, because the cost of importing coke amounts to 30s. per ton, and an addition of 4s. to the expense would not have any appreciable effect in checking importations. Coke is used chiefly in the smelting operations carried on in connexion with the mines of Western Australia, Broken Hill, and elsewhere, and no good object can be served by imposing a duty upon it. I therefore move -

That the words “and on and after 13th March, 1902, free,” be added.

Sir WILLIAM MCMILLAN (Wentworth). - I hope the Treasurer will see the desirability of giving way in this matter. The importations of coke are very small, and we should not afford the slightest excuse for increasing the price of an article which is used so largely in smelting operations.

Sir GEORGE TURNER:

– The importations of coke from abroad into the Commonwealth have been restricted almost entirely to South Australia and Western Australia. South Australia imported last year from beyond the Commonwealth 36,000 tons of coke, of which 11,000 tons came from Germany. During 1900. South Australia imported 36,000 tons of coke from the United Kingdom, and 34,000 tons from New South Wales. I understand, from the information which has been furnished to me, that this industry provides a very large amount of employment in New South Wales, especially in connexion with small coal, which probably would be of little value for other purposes. In view of this fact the Government thought it proper to impose a duty of 4s. per ton upon coke, which certainly cannot be described as a high impost.

Mr JOSEPH COOK:
PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT; ANTI-SOC from 1906; LP from 1910; NAT from 1917

– What rate does that represent 1

Sir GEORGE TURNER:

– I understand that the landed price of coke is about 25s. per ton. I hope that the committee will agree to afford this industry a reasonable measure- of protection.

Mr THOMAS:
Barrier

– I shall certainly support the amendment of the honorable member for Kalgoorlie, to place this article upon the list of exemptions. If there is any industry in Australia which ought to be developed without the aid of a protective duty it is surely that of coke. The- Treasurer has referred to the fact that 36,000 tons of coke were imported by South Australia during 1900 ; but there is no doubt that nearly the whole of that quantity was imported by the Broken Hill Proprietary Company for its smelting works at Port Pirie; As evidencing the fact that there is absolutely no need for the proposed duty, I may mention that the coke industry has recently been developed to such an extent that Australia is now practically supplying her own needs. Only last year the output of coke in New South Wales totalled 128,822 tons. The reason why so much coke was imported in former years was that the quality of the local article was inferior to that of the imported, and consequently the mining companies preferred to buy the latter, although they had to pay a higher price for it. The English and German coke contained only 7 per cent, of ash, whereas the colonial article contained about 14 per cent. The difficulty with the local coke has been that it was not of sufficiently good quality to meet the needs of the smelters. Of recent years, however, some of the large mining companies have erected their own coke works, and in other ways the quality of the article has been improved, so that at the present moment all the Broken Hill mines are purchasing colonial coke. The annual coke bill of the Sulphide Corporation represents £10,000 a year, and they draw the whole of their supplies from Newcastle. The Block 14 mine consumes 200 tons of coke per week, all of which is manufactured within the Commonwealth. At the present time the Broken Hill Proprietary mine uses 1,000 tons of coke per week, 500 tons of which was formerly imported. Now, however, they have erected their own plant, which turns out that quantity weekly, so that in future they will need to import none. In my judgment the proposed duty of 4s. per ton upon this article will, if carried, be inoperative, especially as the freightage from Germany is equivalent to the value of the coke at the mine. I hope that the Treasurer will agree to admit this article free.

Mr KNOX:
Kooyong

– I would point out that if the Treasurer insists upon the proposed duty he will seriously affect certain mining industries which require to use coke of a different character from that which is now being manufactured within the States. Various classes of ore have to be treated, according to their fusibility, in different ways. There is a certain class of coke required. It must support the burden of the ore to such an extent that the heat is diffused through it gradually, in order that certain chemical combinations may be effected in the charges. By the establishment of works at Illawarra, on behalf of the Mount Lyell and the Broken Hill Company; we believe that we have surmounted the difficulty which has been experienced in the past. But production at Newcastle or Illawarra might prove insufficient to meet the necessities of any large field which may be discovered, say, in Western Australia; requiring this special class of coke ; and it would be a great injustice to prevent importation.

Cardiff coke goes to all parts of the world, though I hope we are successfully overcoming the difficulty which has been a bar to the more general use of Australian coke. No revenue will be derived from the imposition of this duty, which might have the effect of considerably hampering the mining industry. Therefore as this is a nominal impost which will benefit no particular industry, I hope the Treasurer will see that it is not worth fighting about, and will remove another obstacle in the way of such an important interest as that of mining.

Mr WATKINS:
Newcastle

– I trust that the Treasurer will stand by this duty. According to the honorable member for Barrier, no coke is imported; and if that be so, nobody will suffer from the proposal of the Government. There are enough people engaged in this industry in the Commonwealth to insure competition sufficient to keep prices down to a reasonable figured and, as a matter of fact, coke manufacturers in New South Wales have had a very precarious existence. The question whether this coke is of a quality acceptable to the mines at Broken Hill is one f&r the managers themselves to consider, but I know that as far back as 1901 coke was being produced just as good as that produced to-day. Even under a 10 per cent, duty in New South Wales there was a gradual diminution of imports, until they came within £26,832 in’ value ; but when the duty was removed in 1896, the imports jumped to £135,000. I have not the figures in relation to New South Wales in subsequent years, but the imports of coke into the Commonwealth in 1901 were valued at £44,921. This is a primary industry, which employs a great number of people, particularly in New South Wales, and it is worthy of some assistance. We are told that proprietors of mines who require coke are about to manufacture for themselves, and, if a duty will hurry them on, the better it will be for all concerned.

Mr Thomas:

– There was no coke im- ported into New South Wales last year.

Mr WATKINS:

– There was very little imported ; but the removal of the works from Broken Hill to Port Pirie may have had some effect, as is shown by the large quantity of foreign coke imported into South Australia during the year 1900. We have been protecting industries right through this Tariff, and here we have a genuine primary industry, by means of which we ought to be able to supply all the coke required in Australia. The honorable member for Barrier says that coke good enough in quality for the requirements of Broken Hill is being made here, but the honorable member for Kooyong contends that special coke is required for certain work ; and we hardly know which statement to accept. When the duty was remitted in New South Wales in 1895, and contracts were being entered into, the objection raised to the colonial coke was that it contained 1 per cent, more ash than the German coke.

Mr Thomas:

– Ten per cent.

Mr WATKINS:

– If that objection has been overcome, and it is the intention of persons, who require this coke, to enter on its manufacture, they will not be hampered by such a duty as that proposed. The industry in the district which I represent has not had that pleasant history which some people would like us to believe. From time to time works have been closed down and restarted as circumstances demanded, and there has been a struggle against the competition of the importations from abroad. I have not with me the exact figures as to the charges for freight, but to send coke from Newcastle round to Broken Hill costs as much as to bring coke to Adelaide from England or Germany. The duty, when analyzed, is not so high as duties which we have passed in connexion with other industries. I understand it amounts to nearly 20 per cent., and in accepting the proposal of the Government, we shall have the satisfaction of knowing that we are supporting an industry which employs a large amount of labour.

Mr. CONROY (Werriwa).- I hope the committee will not agree to this duty, which will bring in no revenue. Coke is merely coal from which the volatile constituents have been removed, and the trouble is that there is always a certain amount of ash and other residuum. The quality of coke depends entirely on the quality of the coal, and there are certain classes of coal that we have not in New South Wales, or any part of Australia. Coke of certain kinds must be imported, even if only to mix with other coke, and it would be absurd for us to quarrel with what nature has ordained. Are people engaged in the mining industry to have no consideration at all ? It is admitted that the proposed duty is practically prohibitive ; but if imported coke cannot be obtained, certain classes of ores cannot be effectively smelted, and that will cause a great number of miners to be thrown out of employment The honorable member for Kooyong pointed out that some kinds of imported coke are much more able to bear the weight of the ore placed upon them than are other kinds, and are therefore necessary for certain smelting operations.

Mr E SOLOMON:
FREMANTLE, WESTERN AUSTRALIA · FT

– I hope that the Government will not insist upon this duty. We have already placed a heavy duty upon mining machinery, and the proposed duty will still further hamper the mining industry. It costs 30s. to land coke in Western Australia, and it has then to be taken some 300 miles to get it to the mines. Therefore it will be almost impossible to pay the proposed duty upon imported coke, though a great deal of it is absolutely necessary for smelting operations. The Government must realize that the duty is a prohibitive one, because they do not expect to receive any revenue from it. The mining industry should receive some consideration, not only because of the number of men to whom it gives employment, but because the whole Commonwealth is, to a. great extent, dependent for its wealth upon the development of our mineral resources.

Mr FULLER:
Illawarra

– The honorable member for Newcastle, who supports this duty for the protection of what he calls a primary industry, must know that it will have absolutely no effect upon that industry. But when we, on this side, were endeavouring to have the duty upon mining machinery and machinery “used in the coke industry reduced, he and other honorable members resisted our efforts. It was only with great trouble, and through the representations I made to the Minister for Trade and Customs, that I was able to have placed upon the free list an important piece of machinery used in some of the coke works in Illawarra, upon which the duty at the rate proposed would have amounted to about £350. It might be thought from the honorable member’s remarks that- the Dibbs duty of 10s. per ton on coke produced an immediate boom in the coke industry, but as a matter of fact the industry began to go down directly that duty was imposed, and to prosper by .leaps and bounds when it was taken off again, although, of course, I do not contend that either the duty or the absence of a duty was responsible for that state of things. According to Coghlan, the quantity of coke made in the northern districts of New South Wales in 1890 was 15,886 tons, and in 1898, 34,422 tons, while the quantity made in the southern and south-western districts in 1890 was 15,211 tons, and in 1898, 47,800 tons. The total quantity of coke made in- 1890 was 31,097 tons, and in 1898, 82,222 tons. On the other hand, in 1890, 38,174 tons of coke were imported, and in 1898 only 4,000 tons; while last year, I believe, no coke was imported. The coke industry, wherever it has been established, has been established without the aid of a duty. What we want in New South Wales to insure its prosperity is, not a high duty, but the free admission of mining machinery, and of the machinery used in the manufacture of coke.

Mr CRUICKSHANK:
Gwydir

– The honorable member for Illawarra says that he was instrumental in having a certain coke-making machine placed upon the free list ; but I venture to think that the company which asked him to have that done also told him that a duty upon coke was necessary for the encouragement of their enterprise.

Mr Fuller:

– No. I have not been asked to vote for a duty upon coke.

Mr CRUICKSHANK:

– I have received communications from a number of people, asking me to support the placing of certain machinery - and among it coke-making appliances - upon the free list ; and to vote for a duty upon coke. I think that as we have listened to the representations of the coke manufacturers in regard to the exemption of coke-making machinery, we should also listen to their representations in regard to the imposition of a duty upon coke, and vote for the Government proposal.

Mr. O’MALLEY (Tasmania). - While listening to the honorable and learned member for Illawarra, I began to think that free-trade created the coke industry, and that without it not a ton of coke would have been produced on God’s earth. As a matter of fact, however, the coke industry of New South Wales rests upon the genius of the Americans who invented the coke ram and the ovens in which the coke - which is merely roasted coal - is treated. This continual fiscal rivalry between the representatives of New South

Wales and Victoria is the most deadly enemy of the stability of industrial facts.

Mr POYNTON:
South Australia

– I wish to again point out to the Treasurer that, notwithstanding the duty, Cardiff coke must continue to be imported. At Port Pirie they use a ton of Cardiff coke to a ton of Newcastle coke, because the Cardiff coke is able to sustain the weight of the fluxes and ores better than the Newcastle coke. That is the reason they imported £36,000 worth from abroad. But for the fact that they require some of the Cardiff coke to blend with the Newcastle product, they might obtain all their supplies more cheaply from New South Wales.

Mr JOSEPH COOK:
PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT; ANTI-SOC from 1906; LP from 1910; NAT from 1917

– I agree with what has been said by the honorable member for Illawarra, that if those engaged in the coke industry of New South Wales could be relieved from the burdens imposed upon them by the Tariff they would not require any protection. It has been shown by the honorable member for Newcastle and the honorable member for Barrier that New South Wales can easily compete with the f oreign coke, because of the special natural advantages which she enjoys. Coal is obtainable as cheaply in New South Wales as in any part of the world, and more cheaply than in England. The natural protection afforded by the freight charges upon coke amounts to at least 75 per cent, upon the cost of the article, because coke is very light and takes up a great deal of space. The prime cost of coke in England would not amount to more than 10s. or 12s. per ton, and the duty would therefore represent fully 30 per cent, of the value of the commodity. Under all the circumstances, the duty is entirely unnecessary.

Mr. G. B. EDWARDS (South Sydney). - I cannot see any reason for imposing this duty. It cannot have any other effect than that of penalizing some Of those engaged in our largest mining enterprises, and it certainly cannot act as a protective impost. It has been pointed out that some of the mining companies must have Cardiff coke, even though they may have to pay more for it, and they will cease to use it only when the- cost reaches such a high figure that smelting “operations can no longer be profitably carried on. This is not a New South Wales question, because the people of that State are scarcely interested, and I was rather surprised to hear the remarks of the honorable member for Tasmania, Mr. O’Malley. That honorable member ought to know that the duty on coke will, in years to come, press more heavily upon Tasmania than upon any other State. Tasmania is destined to be the most important mining centre in the Commonwealth, and smelting furnaces will before very long be studded all over the west coast. Tasmania is now using New South Wales coke, to a very large extent, but she may shortly require to import coke from abroad as well, and it is no part of our duty to hamper thosewho are engaged in enterprises which we all desire to see developed.

Mr WINTER COOKE:
Wannon

– I hope the Treasurer will abandon this duty. As has been pointed out, five out of the six States in the Commonwealth have hitherto admitted coke free. It has also been mentioned that Australian coke is almost invariably used for ordinary purposes. There are circumstances, however, under which it has been found necessary to use coke of a higher quality than that locally produced, and the only effect of the duty will be to impose a penalty upon those engaged in an important primary industry. The revenue derived from, the duty cannot be very large in any case, and no useful purpose will be served by imposing it. We were told by the Prime Minister, when he spoke at Maitland, that it was not intended to discourage any of the existing industries of the Commonwealth, and we shall be making a very wide departure from that policy if we impose the duty now proposed.

Sir EDWARD BRADDON:
Tasmania

– I desire to emphasize the remarks of the honorable member for South Sydney with regard to the effect of this duty upon Tasmania. I feel sure that my honorable colleague, Mr. O’Malley, who may be said to specially represent the west coast of Tasmania, would never dream of imposing a duty which would injure his constituents.

Mr.Watkins.- Tasmania imported only 250 tons of coke from beyond the Commonwealth last year.

Sir EDWARD BRADDON:

– The honorable member must pay some regard not only to what has taken place in the past, but to what is likely to happen in the future. A duty of this kind would have the effect of increasing the cost of coke to the consumer in Tasmania, and I hope the committee will not agree to it.

Mr. O’MALLEY (Tasmania). - I would point out that only 258 tons of coke were imported into Tasmania last year from parts beyond the Commonwealth. I do not care whether a duty is imposed upon coke or not, but I think perhaps the Treasurer might accept 2s. The duty will have no effect whatever upon miningoperations on the west coast of Tasmania.

Mr. CONROY ( Werriwa). - I would remind the honorable member for Newcastle that many of the ships which bring coke here from abroad, afterwards proceed to Newcastle to take in large quantities of coal, and thus indirectly give employment to a large number of miners.

Mr Watkins:

– Not one of them.

Question - That the words “and on and after 13th March, 1902, free” be addedput. The committee divided.

AYES: 23

NOES: 28

Majority … … 5

AYES

NOES

Question so resolved in the negative.

Amendment negatived.

Amendment (by Mr. Kirwan) put -

That the words “and on and after 13th March, 1902, 2s.” be added.

The committee divided.

AYES: 24

NOES: 27

Majority … … 3

AYES

NOES

Question so resolved in the negative.

Amendment negatived.

Amendment (by Mr. O’Malley) negatived.

That the words “ and on and after 13th March, 1902, 3s. “ be added.

Item agreed to.

Item 127. - Cordage and twines, n.e.i., including macrame twines, fleece thread, and brushmakers’ and mattress twines, engine-packing in rope form, and halters and other articles manufactured from cord or twine, including nets and netting,ad valorem, 20 per cent.

Mr A McLEAN:
GIPPSLAND, VICTORIA · PROT

– I would point out to the Treasurer that under this item fishermen’s nets are dutiable.

Sir George Turner:

– I propose to make themfree.

Mr THOMSON:
North Sydney

– I wish to direct the attention of the Treasurer to the fact that macrame twines are included in this item. I understand that these are cotton twines which are not manufactured in the Commonwealth, but stand upon the same footing as do crochet twines, which the Minister has exempted from duty. For that reason I think that they should be placed upon the free list.

Sir George Turner:

– I have instituted special inquiries in regard to macrame twines, and am informed that they are manufactured in Melbourne. The honorable member for North Sydney is well aware that crochet cotton is used by all classes of the community, whereas macrame twine is an entirely different article, which is used principally in connexion with fancy bags.

Mr. G. B. EDWARDS (South Sydney).I would remind the Treasurer that most fishermen’s nets are made from cocoanut fibre, and that at an early stage in the discussion of the Tariff the question of the quantity of binder twine used per acre in agricultural operations was raised by the leader of the Opposition. The accuracy of the large figures mentioned upon that occasion has since been disputed. Immediately afterwards I recollected the twine was largely used for the training of hops, and upon making inquiries I found that the quantity of string used for this purpose very much exceeded that used per acre in connexion with the reaper and binder. In support of my statement, I wish to quote a communication from Mr. W. E. Shoobridge, which reads as follows : -

In reply to your telegram to-day about string for hops, I have not had much experience yet, but this year I did about 16 acres with string made of coir (cocoanut fibre) at a cost of £72 for 48 cwt. - say, 3 cwt. per acre at 30s. per cwt.

Agriculturehas received too little consideration under this Tariff.

Sir George Turner:

– If the honorable member is speaking of what is known as coir yam, that article is not made dutiable under the Tariff, but I have no objection to mentioning it in the exempt list.

Mr. CONROY (Werriwa). - I am surprised that the honorable member for

Gippsland should have made the proposal he did with regard to fishermen’s nets.

Mr A McLEAN:
GIPPSLAND, VICTORIA · PROT

– Fishermen’s nets are not made here.

Mr CONROY:

– Does the honorable member mean to say that the intelligence of Victoria is not equal to the manufacture of fishermen’s nets? I think the honorable member is much more impressed by the fact that such nets are used by certain of his constituents whom he would find it impossible to persuade that they did not pay the duty.

Mr. WILKS (Dalley).- Engine-packing in rope form has to bear a duty of 20 per cent., while engine-packing in sheet form is placed on the exempt list. I know that the Treasurer does not wish to hamper industries, though I can assure him that that will be the effect of this duty in connexion with engine and boiler repairing. A large quantity is used at Mort’s Dock and other engineering establishments. There are three kinds of engine-packing in rope form made here known as chalk, soapstone, and flax packing, and though they are cheap, they are very little used. The brands generally used by the trade are known as asbestos wick, asbestos plaited, Blake’s pump, and Turk’s core packing. Formerly rope-packing - which is purely a technical trade term - was free in New South Wales, free in Queensland, 10 per cent, in Tasmania, and 15 per cent, in Western Australia. The Treasurer expects to receive from this item, “ Cordage and Twines, n.e.i.,” only £11,300 for the whole Commonwealth, so that to place rope packing on the free list would not mean much loss of revenue. I should like to know what prompted the Treasurer to place one kind of engine-packing on the free list and the other kind on the dutiable list.

Sir George Turner:

– Simply because I understand that sheet-packing is not made here, while rope-packing is very largely made locally from pure hemp and flax.

Mr WILKS:

– As a compromise, I move -

That the words “20 per cent., and on and after 13th March, 1902, 10 per cent.” be inserted after the words “Engine packing in rope form.”

Mr. SAWERS (New England). - The honorable member for Dalley draws a distinction between the two kinds of ropepacking.

Mr Wilks:

– Only as a compromise.

Mr SAWERS:

– I have not much knowledge of these articles, but I have had to buy and use engine-packings, and I should be inclined to move that both classes be placed on the free list. If enginepacking, in sheet form, is not made in Australia, that is a good reason why it should be placed on the free list. I do not think that the local packing is of anything like the good quality of that imported.

Mr BROWN:
Canobolas

– Does this item include sewing twine which is used by graziers for their woolpacks, and by farmers for their wheat sacks? This twine has to be of great strength and durability, and, so far as I know, it is not made in Australia.

Mr Sawers:

– There are quantities of it made locally.

Mr BROWN:

– I am not prepared to support a duty of 20 per cent., if it means any special increase in the price of such twines as I have mentioned, which I should like to see included in the amendment of the honorable member for Dalley.

Mr. JOSEPH COOK (Parramatta).I would support an amendment that engine packing in rope form should pay only a very small duty, because it is necessary in several large industries in New South Wales.

Sir George Turner:

– I am told that this packing is largely made in the States. I think that the proposed duty is a fair one, if the article to which the honorable member refers is made in the Commonwealth. If he can prove to me that it is not, I am willing to consider a suggestion for reducing the duty.

Mr JOSEPH COOK:
PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT; ANTI-SOC from 1906; LP from 1910; NAT from 1917

– I do not ask that the article be placed upon the free list. I am quite content that it should pay a revenue duty, and it seems to me that 10 per cent, is quite high enough for all cordage and twine. In New South Wales the manufacturers of these articles appear to have done very well without the assistance of the duty. The honorable member for Dalley has referred to the large quantity of engine packing used by the Mort’s Dock establishment, and I would point out that the Clyde Engineering Works, which employ hundreds of hands, also use a great deal of it.

Mr. CONROY (Werriwa).- I ask the honorable member for Dalley to withdraw his amendment, to enable me to discuss the proposed duty upon sewing twine.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

Mr CONROY:

– I know from what the Treasurer has already said that, if there were only one manufacturer of twine in the Commonwealth, it would be absurd to ask him to consider the interests of the consumers, and as there are three such manufacturers, no doubt his desire to retain the proposed duty is increased threefold. The duty will fall very heavily upon the farmers, and upon all selectors and pastoralists throughout Australia ; but, as they do not combine to bring pressure upon their representatives, they are not considered, while the manufacturers have only to walk up here and say, “ We want a duty,” and honorable members opposite seem to think it proper to give it to them. Twine is very largely used by our farmers and pastoralists, because every bag of wheat or oats or potatoes that they send away has to be sewn up first, and every bag of wool is enclosed in canvass and sewn.

Mr Macdonald-Paterson:

– The duty would not make a difference of a farthing upon a bale of wool.

Mr CONROY:

– In the aggregate it will mean a very large sum. If the duty were a low one, the revenue yielded by it would all go into the Treasury ; whereas, by imposing a high duty, we allow a large amount of money to be diverted into the pockets of the manufacturers. But honorable members dare not go before their constituents and tell them that. I trust, however, that the electors will take the earliest opportunity to show them what they think oftheir conduct. In the present temper of the committee, and knowing that the Government are able to command a majority, I think it is useless to propose the exemption of all cordage and twine, but I propose to move, later on, the reduction of the duty to 15 per cent.

Mr. BROWN (Canobolas). - I wish to point out to the committee that the twine to which the honorable member refers is extensively used by both graziers and farmers, and must combine thinness with strength, or otherwise a great deal of inconvenience is suffered by them. I have known of farmers having to sew their bags and their bales twice over, because of the inferior quality of the twine with which they have been supplied, and it is necessary therefore that they should be able to obtain cheaply twine of the best description. They are already asked to pay heavy duties upon many of the things which they use or consume, and we should therefore give them some consideration in this matter. I am afraid it would be useless to move the exemption of sewing twine ; but I intend to propose that the duty upon it be reduced to 10 per cent.

Sir GEORGE TURNER:

– I will give the honorable member an opportunity of doing that later on ; but I should like a proper definition of the article to which he refers. “Sewing twine “ is too wide a term.

Amendment (by Mr. Wilks) proposed -

That the words “engine packing in rope form” be omitted.

Question - That the words proposed to be omitted stand - put. The committee divided.

AYES: 28

NOES: 21

Majority … … 7

Amendment (by Mr. Wilks) put -

AYES

NOES

That the words” 20 per cent. , and on and after 1 3th March, 1902, 10 per cent.” be inserted after the words, “ engine packing in rope form.”

The committee divided.

AYES: 20

NOES: 29

Majority … … 9

AYES

NOES

Question so resolved in the negative.

Amendment negatived.

Amendment (by Mr. Conroy) put -

That the words “ and on and after 13th March, 1902, 15 per cent.” be added.

The committee divided.

AYES: 20

NOES: 27

Majority …. … 7

AYES

NOES

Question so resolved in the negative.

Amendment negatived.

Item agreed to.

Mr. BROWN (Canobolas). - In pursuance of a previous intimation, I move -

That the following new item be inserted to follow item 127 : - “ Seaming twine, on and after 13th March, 1902, 10 per cent.”

This twine is commonly known in the farming and grazing districts as “ sewing twine.” I need not trouble the committee with arguments which have already been used, and I content myself with moving the amendment.

Mr KENNEDY:
Moira

– My attention was directed to this item at an earlier stage, and I now ask those who have spoken as if a duty would be a serious imposition upon the users of this class of twine, and particularly the farmers’ representative from Werriwa, to consider what it will actually amount to per annum, assuming that a duty of 20 per cent, is imposed ? A farmer must be in a pretty large way who uses 12 lbs. weight of this twine in a year. The retail price is10d. per lb., which would make 10s., and therefore a 20 per cent, duty upon the article would amount to a tax upon the farmer of 2s. per annum. However, I do not believe for a moment that the cost of the twine would be increased to the farmer by the imposition of this duty. Those who are always contending for the interests of the primary producers have now an opportunity to give them material assistance. It is assumed by many honorable members that this is entirely a foreign product, but I may remind them that in Australia we can grow flax for the manufacture of this twine equal to anything that can be grown in the world, and we can alsoconvert it into fibre, and afterwards into twine.I will ask the honorable member for Canobolas to examine these samples of flax fibre, and of the finished article, and I have no doubt that experts will tell Mm that this is as good a sample of seaming twine as can possibly be obtained. The growth of this product need not be confined to any particular part of the Commonwealth, as it can be grown successfully in every State in which the climate and soil is suitable. It is true that, like all novel enterprises, those who experimented in this industry lost a little money in the earlier stages of its development, but I can give the committee the experience of a gentleman who is engaged in growing flax at the present time in Victoria. He writes -

My brothers and myself are often asked personally and by letter whether the growing of flax for fibre will pay, and as I know that the widelycirculated Leader is ever ready to publish matters of interest to the farmer, I take this means of answering the inquiries. We feel it our duty to make our experience known because we are convinced that the industry has a great future in this country, both in supplying our own wants, which run into thousands of pounds worth of fibre, and when that limit has been reached, the markets of Europe are open to us to the same extent as for wool or other textile fabrics. We have even now offers from German and Irish spinning mills to ship as many tons as we can raise at a very satisfactory price. This is not ignoring the firm who are the recognised buyers of flax fibre in Melbourne, and who alone absorb 300 tons annually, worth about £15,000. . . . We started by sowing a few pounds ofseed received from the department of Agriculture in 1891, and now for this coming season our area is 150 acres. Through ignorance and too close adherence to European methods in manufacturing the fibre, we made a loss on the first four crops (which were small ones), until, by adapting our methods to Australian conditions resulting in a great saving of expense, we averaged £16 per acre off a 10-acre field in 1899, leaving a clear profit, after paying wages’ at from las. to 25s. per week and keep, of £7 per acre, inclusive of bonus at the rate of £2 per acre. Last season’s crop of64 acres which we are now manufacturing is turning out equally well and thus has induced us to sow so largely for the coming season, namely, 150 acres.

The writer then goes on to explain in detail the system adopted in the cultivation of the soil, the planting, and harvesting of the flax, and its reduction into fibre ready for manufacturing into twine. In the light of that information the committee need, not hesitate to give the industry all the assistance asked for in this form. Those who have used this twine, and I have used it myself in all seasons of the year, know that they can get none better or cheaper. The duty proposed can never be a tax upon those using the twine, because in a very short time we shall in Australia supply our own requirements, and then as demonstrated by the gentleman to whom I have referred, we shall have the markets of the world open to us for the products of this industry.

Amendment negatived.

Item 128. - Corks, bungs, net floats, cork mats, and other manufactures of cork, ad valorem 15 per cent.

Amendment (by Sir George Turner) agreed to -

That the words “ net floats “ be omitted.

Mr. CONROY (Werriwa).- It cannot be. pretended that there is any local industry involved in this item, and, therefore, I move -

That the words “and on and after 13th March, 1902, 10 per cent.” be added.

Amendment negatived.

Item, as amended, agreed to.

Item 129. - Explosives, viz.: -

Ammunition and cartridges, n.e.i., advalorem 20 per cent.

Fireworks, ad valorem 20 per cent.

Fuse, per coil of 24 feet or less, and in proportion for any greater quantity, per coil, 1d. Powder, sporting, per lb., 4d. N.E.I., per lb.,1d. **Mr. McDONALD** (Kennedy).- I move- >That the words " and on and after 13th March, 1902, free," be added to the duty "Ammunition and cartridges, n.e.i., *ad valorem* 20 percent." I understand that the few people who are engaged in this industry merely load the cartridges, and that very little revenue will be derived from the duty. Question - That the words proposed to be added be so added - put. The committee divided. AYES: 27 NOES: 17 Majority ... ... 10 AYES NOES Question so resolved in the affirmative. Amendment agreed to. **Mr. McDONALD** (Kennedy).- I move- That the words " and on and after 13th March, 1902, free," be added to the duty" Fuse . . . per coil,1d." The amount of fuse imported into the Commonwealth is estimated at 1,116,387coils, and the proposed duty is expected to return £4,652. Hitherto fuse has been free in all the States, with the exception of Victoria, where the duty was1d. per coil, and of Tasmania, where the duty was 20 per cent.; and in Victoria the price of fuse before the introduction of this Tariff was1d. more than its price in the other States. Considering that the one Victorian manufacturer has been able for a number of years to compete in the other States against the foreign manufacturers, it is clear that the industry does not need protection, and as we have placed very high duties on mining machinery, we should make a concession to the miners in this respect. {: .speaker-F4R} ##### Mr WATSON:
Bland -- It should not be inferred from the Treasurer's last statement that all imported fuse deteriorates ; because nearly all the fuse which has been used in five out of the six States has been imported fuse. I believe that there are seven or eight men, and 30 or 40 women, engaged in manufacturing fuse in Victoria, and I know that as soon as the Tariff was introduced the price of fuse in New South Wales was increased by exactly the amount of the duty. In that State there are an enormous number of men who are prospecting on their own account, or mining in small parties, and everypenny of expense saved is a material gain to them. We have been constrained to impose duties on many of the articles used by those engaged in mining, and, therefore, the least we can do is to insure that the articles which the individual miner has to purchase. for himself, such as fuse, dynamite, and rack-a-rock, shall be procurable at the lowest possible cost. The few people who have been employed in Victoria should not count against them. Perhaps if it were a large industry I should be willing enough to make some concession. I do not see that it is worth while to make a great sacrifice for the sake of that which can be only a small industry. The fusemakers of the world, I understand, can be counted on the fingers of onehand, consequently it is not likely that there will be a great number in Australia if we retain the duty. {: .speaker-KQ4} ##### Mr McCOLL:
Echuca -- Although it is a small industry, still it is one of very great importance, because the lives of many men depend upon the quality of its products. There is no district of the same area in Australia where so much fuse is used as in the district of Bendigo. There has been no complaint as to the price of the fuse which is turned out by the factory in Bendigo. It is worked by the same firm that sends the best fuse out of the United Kingdom - namely, Messrs. Bickford, Smith, and Co. They are able to supply not only Bendigo, but this State and most of the others. A very small fuse factory can supply all Australia. The slightest damage to fuse - for instance, a break, or a bruise, or dampness -might destroy the lives of many men. It ought to be used as soon as possible after it is made. Being made on the spot, it is sent out in good order and condition, and there is much less risk of accidents than when imported fuse is used. The committee will be wise to encourage the factory to continue making fuse here. There is no doubt that, with a wider market at their command, they may be able to reduce the price of the article. **Mr. JOSEPH** COOK (Parramatta).The impositionof this duty is urged by the honorable member for Echuca to enable a firm in Bendigo to compete against the samefirm in England. Why should we put on a stiff duty, and thus penalize fuse users throughout the continent, to enable a manufacturer in Bendigo to compete against himself in England? If his fuse is the best in the world, we might as well buy the fuse he makes at Bendigo, as buy the fuse he sends out from the old country. Certainly the large number of persons who use this article as the raw material of their industry ought not to be called upon to pay a heavy impost for the purpose of benefiting a firm which, for its own convenience, purchased a factory in Bendigo. **Mr. CONROY** (Werriwa).- If we imported the quantity of fuse which the honorable member for Kennedyhas stated, theduty would yield £4,700 a year. The Treasurer has put down only £700 a year as the estimated revenue from this source, consequently he expects the difference of £4,000 to go to one firm. Surely even the most insatiable protectionist on the other side ought to think twice before he consents to put that sum, wrung from every hardworking miner, in the pockets of one firm. {: .speaker-KYJ} ##### Sir JOHN QUICK:
Bendigo -- If I thought that the imposition of the duty would be oppressive to the mining industry I should vote for the amendment. Since its imposition, and since the" establishment of the local factory the price of fuse for mining purposes has gone down considerably, and we are getting a better article. The production of this fuse began many years ago under the management of **Mr. Charles** Perry. Immediately he started his factory the price went down, and the competition became so keen that Messrs. Bickford, Smith, and Co. began negotiations to buy him out. They bought him out under threats that unless he sold out they would kill his industry by reducing the price of the article. On the 7th July, 1887, they addressed to **Mr. Perry** a letter in which this passage occurs - >We still regard sharp competition, with a rapid fall in prices, as the almost inevitable sequel through our failing to come to terms, and, as explained very candidly in *a* former letter, we should deem it our duty to this business instantly to meet you with reduced prices if we find your fuse introduced into other colonies than Victoria. As before stated, we have no doubt as to the issue, for the reduction of prices would after all affect but a comparatively small portion of the sale of one of our factories, and we have at this moment ten in full work. **Mr. Perry** refused to yield to the pressure for a considerable time, and, on the 28th September, 1887, he received this letter from the firm : - >We will not now discuss the question of reduction of prices and the more stringent competition which would seem inevitable in case we fail to come to terms, as we hope our latest instructions to **Mr. Burgess** will have rendered this subject out of date by laying at least the foundation of a purchase arrangement ; but should that prove otherwise we must simply confirm our previous expression on that point, that is to say, we feel the price will have to fall to or below cost price. Eventually **Mr. Perry** yielded to the pressure and sold out to the firm. There has since grown up another competitor, in Messrs. Bentley Brothers, who are now engaged in the production of Victorian fuse, of a character which has gained the confidence of the mining community, and is also sold at a reasonable price. The competition of Messrs. Bentley Brothers has had the effect of keeping prices at their present fair standard, so that, as a matter of fact, Messrs. Bickford, Smith, and Co. do not enjoy a monopoly. This correspondence, is most instructive. It shows that if the foreign importers were able to obtain possession of the market, after starving out the local manufacturers, they could charge as much as they liked. If the protective duty were withdrawn, andpeople like Messrs. Bentley Brothers were driven out of the trade, this countrywould become the happy huntingground of all the fuse producers in the world, who would be able to chargewhatprices they liked. As arepresentative of a mining community, I can say that the imposition of this duty has not had the effect ofincreasingtheprice, buton the other hand hasresulted in reduced prices, and inan improvement in quality. {: .speaker-F4N} ##### Mr FISHER:
Wide. Bay -- It is quite evident, from the discussion that has taken place, that we arenot likely to agree as to the effects of the protective duty inVictoria. The statements of honorable members show that immediately the present duty was imposed the price of fuse was increasedin those States where no duty had previously been levied, by the amount of the duty, namely,1d.per coil. On the other hand, the honorable and learned member for Bendigo states that the Victorian manufacturers have produced a better fuse, and have sold it at a lower price than that charged for the imported article. A very small factory would be sufficient to supply the needs of the whole Commonwealth, and my own feeling isthat the manufacture of fuse, ammunition, and explosives generally, shouldbe undertaken by either the Commonwealth, or by the various State Governments. The soonerthis aspect of the question is considered by honorablemembers thebetter it will befor all concerned. If bad fuse hasbeen admitted into any of the States, the inspection must have been seriously at fault. I do not attach any importance to the statement that the fuse deteriorates during the time occupied in its transit from Europe to the Commonwealth, as the fuse imported into Queensland from abroad is of the most excellent character. I cannot see any good reason for supporting the duty. Amendment agreed to. **Mr. McDONALD** (Kennedy).- I desire to move that sporting powder be admitted free of duty. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir GEORGE TURNER: -- I am afraid that I shall have to consent to the free admission of sporting powder, and of explosives, n.e.i. As we have decided that ammunition and cartridges shall be admitted free, we should place our localmanufacturers at a disadvantage if we imposed a duty upon the powder used by them. I regret that I am under the necessity ofgivingup these duties, from which we expected to derive a considerable amount of revenue, but in view of the attitude taken up by the committee, I see no alternative. **Mr. KNOX** (Kooyong).- We shall have toconsider the effect of exempting explosives from duty. We have already imposed a duty upon glycerine and petroleum jelly, which are absolutely necessary for the manufacture of explosives, and I wish to knowwhether we shall have any opportunity ofCorrecting the anomaliescreated bythe decisions of the committee thisevening. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir George Turner: -- Icannot consent to recommit every item. Mr.KNOX. - Shall we have achance of dealing with thismatter whenwe are considering the exemptions ? {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir George Turner: -I shall not promise that, because I consider that the commodities should be dutiable. Amendment (by **Mr. McDonald)** agreed to- >That the words" and on and after 13th March, 1902, free" be added to the duty "Powder, sporting, per lb.,4d." Amendment (by **Sir George** Turner) agreed to - >That the words " and on and after 13th March, 1902, free "be added to the duty "n.e.i., per lb., 1d." Item,as amended, agreed to. Item 130. - Photographic dry plates, films, and sensitized paper, *ad valorem15* per cent. {: .speaker-KRQ} ##### Mr SKENE:
Grampians -In the absence of the honorable memberf orSouth Australia, **Mr. Glynn,** I beg to move - >That the words " and on and after13th March, 1902, free" be added." Last week the honorable and learned member divided, the committee in regardto cameras, and if we had not been so hurried on that occasion I feel surethat further consideration would have been given to the matter. I wish to put before the committee some information asto the educational value of photography and its usefulness in everyday life. I have in my hand a volume of the *International Science Series,* written by **Dr. Hermann** Vogel, who at the time he wrote the book occupied the position of Professor in the Royal Industrial Academy of Berlin. He says of photography in this work that the object of the professor's chair he occupiedwas not to train professional photographers,but that - >It only admits photography so far as it has importance for industry and science. He says of it that - >Ithas entered into art, science, industry, and life as a new kind of written language. Photography is to appearance what printing is to thought. Typography multiplies what.is written, photography what is drawn ; nay more, it also draws in a chemical way. No doubt a certain technical practice of the art is required that can only be gained by experience ; but it is easy to learn, and the time cannot be distant when it will be taught as an extension of drawing - itself a matter of tuition- in all industrial schools. He also quotes Professor Krippendorf, in his "Photography *as a matter for teaching in schools of industry,"* as follows : - >Drawing is the centre of gravityfor most technical professions, and for this reason alone it ought not to be neglected to promote technical and freehand drawing in every direction. But photography is destined to support these technical studies, as it is also a mode of drawing. Indeed, if it be proposed to draw a complicated machine- such as a weaver's wheel - in a few minutes, photography is the only means to do this. The labour, otherwise requiring weeks, is reduced to an affair of a quarter of an hour, and is so perfectly done that all proportions are duly observed, and the projectionmust be correct from whatever point it is taken, if proper lenses be used. In this way he tells us that mechanics and others are able to take home with them a faithful design ; and he claims that - >It is our duty to announce it publicly, that all these wishes have become a possible and a tangible reality through the progress of photography, and that the practice necessary to effect this is easily attained. From the educational point of view it is worth considering whether photographic apparatus should not be placed upon the free list. Nowadays many young people are engaged and interested in photography. On Saturdays and on Sundays, after church of course, it is not only pleasant, but educationally valuable for them to go out into the country and take snapshots of what they see. This sort of thing ought to be encouraged. It may have the effect of developing talent in directions where it would not otherwise be found ; because there is no question that talent may be developed by the exercise of the faculties in photography. If there is to be a tax, let it be upon protrait photography. That could be done in a very simple way. I hold in my hand a photograph of a lady friend of mine, which was taken in the United States a good many years ago. At the back of it there is a duty stamp which bears a picture of the head of George Washington, with the words - " United States internal revenue." This is a very simple way of collecting aduty, and it has theadvantage that all the money would go into the Treasury. The photographers engaged intaking portraits would simply have to put into the account of the customer the amount of the stamp.Some information has been putbefore me showing thatwhile the duty proposed in the Tariff is 15 per cent., some of the large houses in Melbourne, such as Baker and Bouse, of Collins-street, are charging a very much higher rate on the goods sold. I presume the duty would be upon the wholesale 'importation price, but the information I have shows a list of three articles indicating how the duty has affected the price to thepurchaser. I am toldthat before the duty was imposed Illford special rapid plates, 5x4, were 2s. a dozen. Now they are charged for. at the rateof 2s. 6d. a dozen.That is not 15 per cent, on the importation price, but25 per cent, upon the original selling price. Illford paper used to be1s. a dozen. It is now1s. 3d. per dozen - that is, 25 per cent, on the original selling price. Brownie paper was 6d., and is now 8d., which is 33 per cent, on the selling price before this duty wasimposed. The Treasurer expects toget £1,800 from this item, but if 1 per cent, of the people of Australia were photographed annually, and each took a dozen copies, a small duty on portraits would give the Treasurer £2,000. This would allow the most useful form of photography to be practised free of duty, whilst only portrait photography would contribute to the revenue. Of course, I do not desire that portrait photography should be taxed, but it would be better to tax it than photography of a more useful kind. My object is to draw the attention of the committee to the educational advantages of photographic work, and to the advantages which it offers our young people as a means of amusement. This concession at least should be conceded to them. **Mr. BATCHELOR.** (South Australia).I entirely agree with the honorable member for Grampians that the articles covered by this item are educational material, and I intend to support the proposal that they shall be free. **Sir MALCOLM** McEACHARN (Melbourne). - I shall support the. amendment, although if the Government felt very strongly upon the matter I should rather see sensitized paper admitted free and a reduced duty imposed upon photographic dry plates, as the latter are to be manufactured here. They are largely used by school children and young people, and there are very good reasons why both should be placed on the free list. The item is a very small one, and certainly the use of these articles has a great educational effect. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir GEORGE TURNER: -- I do not propose to give way on this item. These articles can be made here, and a large amount of money has recently been expended for the purpose of enabling their manufacture to be entered upon. The manufacturer is to be penalized by a duty on the paper and the glass which he uses, and yet it is proposed that the manufactured article shall come in free. If that is the position protectionists are going to take up it is just as well that we should know it at once. Those who propose to enter upon this work deserve encouragement, and I shall ask the committee to give the reasonable amount of protection proposed. I have not very much sympathy with people who go about taking snapshots. **Sir MALCOLM** McEACHARN (Melbaurne). - It is true that Messrs. Baker and Rouse are starting the manufacture of dry plates here, but they do not propose to manufacture sensitized paper. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir George Turner: -- They say that they are spending £25,000 in connexion with the manufacture of sensitized paper, dry plates, and films. {: .speaker-KQU} ##### Sir MALCOLM McEACHARN: -- My information is that the expenditure is £5,000. There has been a duty of1s. 3d. per ream on sensitized paper, but the present proposal would amount to 1 7s. 6d. per ream. There can be no excuse for increasing the duty on sensitized paper from1s. 3d. to 17s.6d. per ream. {: .speaker-KIQ} ##### Mr MACDONALD-PATERSON:
BRISBANE, QUEENSLAND · FT -P ATERSON (Brisbane). - I sympathize very deeply with those who love to photograph the little dells up the creeks ; children pattering the water of some stream, or the springing of a fish to catch a fly. It is said that these articles are used by children in the public schools, but I think they are luxuries that are quite beyond the functions of State education. I sincerely hope that the Treasurer will press this item and see who are disposed to avoid the responsibility of putting a tax upon what I regard as one of the luxuries of life, no matter whether they be used by young or old. Question - That the words " and on and after 13th March, 1902, free" be addedput. The committee divided. AYES: 20 NOES: 22 Majority ... ... 2 AYES NOES Question so resolved in the negative. Amendment negatived. Amendment (by **Sir Malcolm** McEacharn) negatived - That the words "and on and after 13th March, 1902, 10 per cent." be added. Item agreed to. Item 131. Pipes, smoking, including cases and other accessories, cigar and cigarette holders and cases, smokers' sets and cases, and tobacco pouches, *ad valorem,* 20 per cent. {:#subdebate-6-6} #### Agreed to Item 132. - Twine and yarn, viz., reaper and binder, per cwt., 8s. {: .speaker-L2G} ##### Sir WILLIAM McMILLAN:
Wentworth -- As this is the last item in the Tariff, I think that the Treasurer might exhibit a reasonable generosity by placing it upon the free list. Such an action would constitute a magnanimous ending of this great historical struggle in which his courtesy and good humour have been admirably sustained from beginning to end. {: .speaker-KQ4} ##### Mr McCOLL:
Echuca -- If no other honorable member wishes to propose a lower duty, I shall move in favour of reducing the amount to 6s. per cwt. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir George Turner: -- I have no objection to accepting that proposal. {: .speaker-F4R} ##### Mr WATSON:
Bland -- I wish to submit a prior amendment. I move - >That the words *' and on and after 13th March, 1902, 4s." be added. {: .speaker-K4E} ##### Mr CONROY:
Werriwa -- I should have been glad if this item had been put upon the free list, but as in the present temper of the committee I think it would be impossible to carry a motion to that effect. The proposal made by the honorable member for Bland is so reasonable that it should be agreed to. The manufacture of this article is carried on in New South Wales without the protection of any duty, and if the amendment proposed by the honorable member for Bland is carried it will be given a protection of £! per ton. **Sir WILLIAM** McMILLAN (Wentworth). - I cannot help feeling that it is a very delicate compliment to the argumentative powers of the Opposition that an honorable member, who has persistently voted for high protective duties, has evidently been so affected by our arguments that for the first time during the discussion of the Tariff he has actually had the termerity to move a reduction on the Government proposal. I refer to the honorable member for Echuca. **Mr. McCOLL** (Echuca).- The honorable gentleman is extremely personal in his remarks, and his conduct is unworthy of the position he occupies. I have taken up an independent position in the discussion of the Tariff. I think this duty of 8s. per cwt. will stand reduction, and that a duty of 6s. is fair. We know that before the factory for the production of this article was started here, the prices paid by the farmers was 9d. and lOd. per lb. We know also that when Forsyth's factory was started in Sydney a year or two ago they were threatened by the Deering Twine Trust who sent out 500 tons to be sold at any price to prevent the local twine from going upon the market. If we make the duty upon this article too low, we shall put the farmers in the hands of the importers, who will bleed them, as the honorable member for Wentworth and his craft would bleed them upon everything they use. {: .speaker-KED} ##### Mr KENNEDY:
Moira -- I hope the committee will not reduce the duty upon this article below the amount suggested by the Treasurer. I have heard some extraordinary statements made here as to the relative prices of reaper and binder twine in New South Wales and Victoria, while the article has been free in New South Wales, and there has been a duty of 8s. per cwt. upon it in Victoria. It has been stated that the same class of twine, under these conditions, has been sold for less in New South Wales than in Victoria, but such is not, and never was, the case. I have a practical knowledge of the subject, and I say that, as a matter of fact, we have had better and cheaper twine in Victoria since the local manufacture of the article has been developed. There are some four or five different grades of reaper and binder twine, ranging from 8£d. down to 4£d. per lb. Great stress was laid upon this matter at election time in the farming districts of Victoria, and, as the honorable member for Werriwa has to-night said that no honorable member would stand upon a platform in a farming district and support a proposal' for a duty upon this article, I may tell him that I defended the duty upon this article in a purely farming constituency. The fact is that the importers of twinedesire to get control of the market, and I refer particularly to the Deering Harvester Company, who are practically selling harvester twine as a by-product. They are not concerned in getting any profit upon it, but in the sale only of their implements and machines, and they do not permit their agents to handle any twine but theirs. I hold in my hand a letter to the editor of a paper' circulated in the Goulburn Valley, who wrote strongly in support of statements which had been made from- a public platform. It was stated that locally-manufactured twine was sold for less to the New South Wales farmer than to the Victorian farmer. I quote from a letter, to the 'editor in reply - >I find that Riverina firms buy Melbourne twine, and the farmer pays from- £d: to jd: more per lb. for it than the Victorian farmers pay. > >That is a statement that cannot be refuted and in. support of . it, I quote from the circular of Levy and. Company, of Corowa, a firm, dealing extensively in twine in the Riverina, district. Comparing, their prices in Corowa with the prices on the Victorian, side of the river, I find that the price of pure Manilla twine, 650 feet to the lb.,, is S£d; in Corowa and 7§d. on this side of the river. Manilla Twine, 550 feet to the- lb., costs 8d. on. the northern,. and 7d. on the Victorian side. ; Standard twine, 500 feet to thelb., 7d. in Corowa, and 6d. on the Victorian side; New. Zealand hemp twine, 5£d. and5d.; and Russian hemp-three-ply twine, 10d. in New South Wales, and 9¼d. in Victoria. As I said in discussing seaming twine, those who talk so much of assisting the primary producers have here a. splendid opportunity of renderings assistance to- a substantial industry in the growth of flax in the Commonwealth. From. Australiangrown flax we can make as good, twine ascan. be made from, flax grown in any "other part of the world. We have the soil andthe climate required, and there is no reason, why. we should not assist the growth .of this product of. agriculture. I am- in a position to- say that since the establishment of the local manufacture of reaper, and- binder twine. the Australian farmer has been ableto get'a cheaper and a better twine than. he. could, get before. He will, have to pay nomore for it if this duty is agreed to, and it will, tend to assist the development of the industry in Australia. {: .speaker-L2G} ##### Sir William McMillan: -- As we have got to the last item of the Tariff, honorable, members opposite might consent to a com;promise, and. let the duty, be fixed at 5s. per cwt. {: .speaker-JZF} ##### Mr FULLER:
ILLAWARRA, NEW SOUTH WALES · FT; ANTI-SOC from 1906; LP from 1910 -- With regardto. the primary-industry to which the. honorable member, for Moira has referred, I may point out that, in the State of Victoria,, where encouragement has been, given to it, the. tremendous quantity of £400 worth was? grown last year. The position, in. regard: toNew Zealand flax- and the twine made from it in. Victoria is this.: Flax grown: in NewZealand, is- delivered- at the mills at an average price of., £14 10s. per ton.; and,, taking, the prices- over a number of years, I find that the farmers of New Zealand, are able to purchase it as twine at prices varying from. £21 to £26 a ton. There are two firms in Melbourne,. Messrs. Donaghy and Miller, who make up twine here from New Zealand flax.. The price of £42 per ton is charged for this twine, made from New Zealand flax, though it is no better than that made by the mills in New Zealand. There was a duty of £S per ton in Victoria,. and if we- allow the pretty heavy margin of £1 per ton as freight,, the Victorian farmer ought to have been able to get this twine at £27 at the highest. But in consequence of the protection which gives these firms an opportunity of robbing the farmers, £42 per ton is charged. Under the circumstances we ought to give farmers an opportunity of getting the twine as cheaply as possible by placing it on the free list. {: .speaker-KPM} ##### Mr McCAY:
Corinella -- The honorable member for Illawarra has proved too much. The top price in-New Zealand, according to the figures we have just heard; is £26, and the freight is £1 ; and these sums, added to the duty of £8, gives £35 as the price in Melbourne. How the Victorian manufacfacturers are enabled to charge £7 more than the New Zealand makers to the Victorian farmer I cannot understand: **Mr. PULLER** (Illawarra).- The honorable and learned member for Corinella has quite misunderstood me: I said that the Victorian farmer had to pay £42 for twine, which the New Zealand farmer was able to get at a price ranging, from £2.1 to £26 per ton. I contend that, under the circumstances, the Victorian farmer ought to-have. been able to -get the twine - at a much- less price. **Mr. WATSON** (Bland.).- It is stated that twine has been, and:is.. as cheap in Victoria, as in Sydney. I have in my hand a letter from, a manufacturer in Sydney, stating that, because of the: low. price at which twine is being sold, in: that city, it is impossible for him - to compete. The importers have loaded, up with, stocks valued at £30,000 to £40,000 in- anticipation of theduty, andi if. we- impose a. high, duty these gentlemen will, unload at an increased price. {: .speaker-KNJ} ##### Mr Mauger: -- That is an argument against all protection. {: .speaker-F4R} ##### Mr WATSON: -- I- admit that ; but it is an argument - ako- against extremely high duties-. I think that my proposal, which means 8 per cent., is a fair one. {: .speaker-K7X} ##### Mr CRUICKSHANK:
Gwydir -- The factories which make this twine in Australia are very limited in number, and the greatdemand for the article is in itself a protection. This line stands very much on the same footing as wire netting-. It is. required wherever new country is being opened up, and, under the Tariff, I hope to see increased areas placed under cultivation. This is a case in which we should not ink pose a large duty, and I regard the suggested compromise as very fair. **Mr. CONROY** (Werriwa).- The honorable member for Corinella has shown: that the price in Melbourne should be £35, and in- regard to this commodity the manufacturers have taken full advantage of a duty of £8. There is no doubt the- manufacturers could sell at £34, but there was no competition in Victoria, whereas there was competition in New South Wales, where the price was much lower. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir GEORGE TURNER:
Protectionist -- The acting leader of the Opposition has drawn- attention to the fact that this is the last item, and I agree with him. that the good fellow^ ship which has existed right through the discussion should not be broken. That being so, I accept the honorable member's suggested compromise. Amendment, by leave, withdrawn. Amendment (by **Sir George** Turner) agreed to - >That the words '' and on and after the 13th March, 1902, 5s." be added. Item, as amended, agreed to. **Mr. WATSON** (Bland).- I have to bring under the notice of the- committee a new item in which- a number of people are interested. I refer to the bottles used for imported spirituous liquors and various other goods which are subject to a- fixed duty. Some time ago I said I knew of a case in which manufacturers in Sydney, when there was no duty in operation; were enabled to send into New Zealand and- the States, excepting Victoria, manufactures enclosed in bottles, at a cheaper rate than that against which local people could compete, owing to the fact that the latter had to pay the ordinary- duty on empty bottles. Those who manufacture essences, and other spirituous compounds within, the Commonwealth j have- to pay a. duty of 15 per cent, upon the corks they use, of- 20 per cent, upon the twine with which the corks are bound- down, of 15 per cent, upon the split skins which cover the corks, of 20 per cent. upon the bottles, and of 13s. per proof gallon upon the spirits which they use in making their compounds. On the other hand, the importer, under the new arrangement sanctioned by the Treasurer and the Minister for Trade and. Customs, at the instance of the honorable member for Macquarie, is charged upon his essences, toilet preparations, perfumes, and extracts according to the proportion, of spirit which they contain, so that there is really no protective duty upon such compounds, and the bottles, corks, split-skins, and twine come in duty free. This is so manifestly unjust to the local manufacturer that I think I have only to mention it to get honorable members to agree to a proposal for remedying it. I therefore move-* - >That the following: new item be added - " Bottles containing spirituous compounds, subject to fixed duty, of. not more than six fluid ounces, nor less than five fluid drachms capacity, 2d. per doz." The amendment does not apply to bottles containing compounds subject to *ad valorem* duty, because an *ad valorem* duty is charged upon the value shown by the invoices, which include the price of the bottles. In Victoria the duty was 6d. per dozen. Further, the amendment does not apply to large-sized bottles, such as beer bottles, because in the case of stimulants there is a sufficient margin between the import duty and the excise duty to make up for the cost of the bottles. The lowest price at which essence bottles- of five drachms capacity can be- imported- is- about 10s. per gross, while perfume bottles, cost from 20s. to 220s. per gross-. The present arrangement puts- English, manufacturers, like Crosse and Blackwell French manufacturers, like Roger and Gallet, and. American manufacturers, like Colgate and Company, of. New York, in a better position thanthat of local manufacturers, which- is not fair. The duty I propose is equal to only 20 per- cent. *ad valorem upon* the cheapest kinds of bottles, and will, not amount to 2 per cent, on- the dearest bottles. {: .speaker-KNI} ##### Mr HARPER:
Mernda -- I indorse the remarks of the honorable member for Bland, but I think that the- principle which he advocates should not be confined to perfumes and essences. Local manufacturers of oils are placed at a similar disadvantage. Under item- 80 there is a fixed duty upon bottled oil, which is exactly proportionate to that upon bulk oil,, so that while importers of bottled oils have to pay nothing upon their bottles, cases, and labels, firms bottling, say, South Australian olive oil, have to pay duty upon these things, and are thus placed at a disadvantage. I think that the Treasurer might accept the amendment, upon the understanding that he will make inquiries with a view to introducing a comprehensive proposal when we again come to deal with the Tariff. It is only fair that the local manufacturer should be placed upon the same footing as the importer. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir GEORGE TURNER: -- I think that the proposal is a justifiable one. The honorable member for Bland informed me of his intention to move the amendment, but I have not had sufficient time to inquire whether it will cover all the cases which should be covered. I think it will be better not to proceed with it now, upon the understanding that later on I shall bring forward a proposal to meet the case to which the honorable member has referred, and all other cases to which I think the principle should apply. {: .speaker-KW6} ##### Mr THOMSON:
North Sydney -- If the amendment of the honorable member for Bland merely remedies an injustice at present suffered by local manufacturers, I shall not object to it ; but we, on this side of the chamber, must reject any proposal to give extra protection where considerable protection has already been given. Amendment, by leave, withdrawn. {:#subdebate-6-7} #### Special Exemptions - Bags, portmanteaux, and trunks (minor articles for) - when not gold, silver, or plated - Buckles, catches for lids, chain-links (known also as link-holders) clips (fluted) corners, frames, holders for lids, loops for handles or straps, nails (fancy), plates, rollers, stars ; catches, handles, hinges, key-plates, and ornaments for portfolios. Baskets, viz. - Carpenters'. Cordage, viz. - Engine-packing in sheet form. Sewing silks, twists, threads, and cottons, and crochet cottons. Unserviceable. Metal. Explosives, viz. - Caps, percussion. Cartridges, military. Detonators. Powder, blasting, common, of which 20 per cent, or less will pass through an 8-mesh sieve. Special fuse powder, for the manufacture of fuse under departmental by-laws. Articles imported by and for the use of the Commonwealth or any State Government. Articles imported by and for the official use of the Governor-General, State Governors, and consuls. Articles imported by and for the use of the Army or Navy, viz. : - Arms, military and naval clothing, musical instruments for bands, military stores, and munitions of war. Articles specially designed and imported for the use of the blind, deaf, and dumb, when imported by governing bodies of public institutions having the care thereof. Minor articles, to be specified in departmental by-laws, for use in the manufacture of goods within the Commonwealth. Models of inventions and other improvements in the Arts. Natural history, specimens of. Outside packages, n.e.i., in which goods are ordinarly imported when containing such goods, and if such goods arefree, or subject only to fixed duties. Passengers' personal effects, including furniture and household goods which have been in actual use by such passengers for at least one year, not exceeding £50 in value per adult passenger. Pictorial illustrations and casts and models for teaching purposes, when imported by governing bodies for the use of universities colleges, or schools. Scientific instruments and apparatus imported by governing bodies for use in universities, colleges, schools or public hospitals. Surgical and dental instruments and appliances (not being furniture), viz.: - Amputating, cupping, dissecting, examining, ear, eye, mouth, nose, throat, midwifery, operating, veterinary, lint, gauzes, bandages, ligatures, oil silk, poroplastic felt, splints, and artificial limbs and eyes. Trophies won abroad. Works of art, being statuary, and paintings framed or unframed, also windows for churches or public institutions, under departmental by-laws. Amendments (by **Sir George** Turner) agreed to - That the word "or" be inserted after the word "gold," line 2, and that the words "or plated," line 2, be omitted. That the word " clamps " he inserted before the word " clips," line 4, and that the word " fluted," line 2, be omitted. {: .speaker-KNJ} ##### Mr MAUGER:
Melbourne Ports -- I move - That the words "engine packing in sheet form," line9, be omitted. If this article is retained on the" exemption list, it will come into unfair competition with indiarubber, which is manufactured within the Commonwealth. "We have given a duty of only 15 per cent, to that particular line. {: .speaker-KQU} ##### Sir MALCOLM McEACHARN:
Melbourne -- I hope that the committee will not agree to the amendment. When we were dealing with engine-packing in item 127, I was assured that it referred to cordage. Amendment negatived. Amendments (by **Sir George** Turner). - agreed to - That after the word "metal," line. 11, the following words be inserted : - Fishing nets, and netting therefor, and net floats. Coir yarn." That the words "Powder, blasting, common, of which 20 per cent., or less, will pass through an 8-mesh sieve. Special fuse powder for the manufacture of fuse under departmental by-laws," lines 13 to 16 be omitted. That the words " cartridge cases, empty, caps, or wads" be inserted after the word "Detonators," line 12. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir GEORGE TURNER:
Protectionist -- I propose to leave the question of the right of a State Government to the free importation of any articles for its use to stand or fall by the words of the Constitution Act. I think that will be a simpler plan to adopt, and it will prevent any question arising as to our constitutional power. I move - >That the words "or any State Government," lines 17 and 18, be omitted. {: .speaker-K8L} ##### Mr THOMAS:
Barrier -- I am sorry that the Treasurer has moved this amendment, because I was hoping that he would be willing to allow not only a State Government, but also a municipality, to import duty free any articles it required for its use. Amendment agreed to. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir GEORGE TURNER: -- I find on inquiry that there is a duty collected everywhere on any goods which are imported for the official use of consuls. Therefore I move - >That the word " or " be inserted after the word "Governor-General," and that the words "or consuls," line 20, be omitted. {: .speaker-L2G} ##### Sir WILLIAM McMILLAN:
Wentworth -- Is my right honorable and learned friend right in saying that the duty is levied on articles imported for the official use of consuls ? {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir George Turner: -- Apparently so. {: .speaker-L2G} ##### Sir WILLIAM McMILLAN: -- I was told in Sydney that it was decided to allow the official uniform for a consul to come in duty free, but to charge a duty on his matches and tobacco. Certainly it should be done outright if it is done at all. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir George Turner: -- The difficulty arose under these words. {: .speaker-KW6} ##### Mr THOMSON:
North Sydney -- I would ask the Treasurer whether he considers it desirable to make these exemptions? If these articles are exempt under any law which we have to recognise, it is not necessary to enumerate them here. If on the other hand they are not exempted by law, it would be much better to charge each department of the State or Commonwealth the amount of duty imposed upon the goods imported, and arrange for compensation is a different manner. The same objection applies to this as to the admission of goods imported by, and for the use of the Commonwealth or any State Government, although perhaps not to the full extent. The Government have adopted the plan of charging for the services rendered by one department to another, because they desire to know what is the actual cost of keeping up the various establishments, and it would perhaps be better to make everything dutiable in the first instance. The same remarks apply to the proposal to exempt articles imported by, and for the use of, the army and the navy of the Commonwealth. {: .speaker-L2G} ##### Sir William McMillan: -- I think there is a difference between charging for services rendered by one department to another, and the levying of taxation throughthe Customs. We should be adopting a rather roundabout method of proceeding if we were to charge duty and then refund it. I think the honorable member for North Sydney rather confuses services rendered, which entail certain expenditure, with the levying of taxation. {: .speaker-KW6} ##### Mr THOMSON: -- I certainly was not confusing the two things, but I was only using the departmental practice as an illustration. The distinctions made here only create complications, and it would be preferable if the Governor-General and State Governors had to pay duty upon the goods imported by them, and were allowed compensation for the amount by allowance. I suppose that the " army and navy " referred to in the exemption immediately following that which we are now considering would be the army and navy of the Commonwealth. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir George Turner: -- No ; that refers to the British army and navy. {: .speaker-KW6} ##### Mr THOMSON: -- The only army and navy recognised under the Constitution are the Commonwealth army and navy, and I think the exemption would apply to them only unless otherwise expressed. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir George Turner: -- All articles required for the Commonwealth army and navy would be imported by the Commonwealth Government, and would be exempt in that way. Amendment agreed to. {: .speaker-F4N} ##### Mr FISHER:
Wide Bay -- I should like to know what is the scope of the exemption of articles imported by and for the use of the army and navy, including musical instruments for bands, military stores, and munitions of war. From some of the reports I have recently read, I should judge that military stores include pianos, harmoniums, and so on. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir George Turner: -- No ; military stores and munitions of war would be very similar. {: .speaker-F4N} ##### Mr FISHER: -- Supposing that the military authorities were to import musical instruments for, their bands and afterwards, sell them ? {: .speaker-L2G} ##### Sir William McMillan: -- That would be stopped. {: .speaker-F4N} ##### Mr FISHER: -- I am afraid that abuses will creep in. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir GEORGE TURNER: -- I move - >That the word " including," line 36, be omitted, with a view to insert in lieu thereof the word "Passengers'." The intention is that passengers shall be allowed to introduce their personal effects free of duty, and also to bring in furniture and household goods to the value of £50 per adult passenger. The amendment is intended to make the exemption more clear. Amendment agreed to. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir GEORGE TURNER: -- It has been pointed out that in many cases pictorial illustrations and casts and models for teaching purposes may be imported for the use of educational institutions which have no governing bodies, and I therefore move - >That the words "governing bodies," line 42, be omitted, with a view to insert in lieu thereof the word " and." Amendment agreed to. Amendment (by **Sir George** Turner) proposed - >That the words "governing bodies," line 44, be omitted with a view to insert in lieu thereof the word "and." **Sir MALCOLM** McEACHARN (Melbourne). - I wish to omit all the words after " apparatus " in the exemption relating to scientific instruments and apparatus. As the exemption now stands it restricts the exemption to instruments and apparatus imported, for use in universities, colleges, schools, or public hospitals, but if only governing bodies of these institutions are to escape payment of duty, the exemption will operate unfairly to shopkeepers who have to keep a. stock of scientific instruments in case they are required for use in hospitals and similar institutions. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir George Turner: -- The amendment suggested makes the exemption too wide. {: .speaker-KQU} ##### Sir MALCOLM McEACHARN: -- Perhaps what I am proposing may go too far, but the difficulty ought to be met. in some way. There should be some means by which the Government will not take away from those who import these articles the trade they will get from the hospitals. It is unfair that the hospitals should obtain the articles free while there are stocks in Melbourne. I hope the Treasurer will consider what can bedoneto meet such cases. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir George Turner: -- The only object is to assist the hospitals, and I do not think we can say that individuals who import surgical instruments and sell, them shall be allowed to get them free. Amendment agreed to. **Sir MALCOLM** McEACHARN (Melbourne). - I would call attention to the fact that the very thing I wanted to have done in regard to the exemptions just dealt with is being done in the case of. surgical and dental appliances. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir George Turner: -- The surgical instruments here enumerated would probably cover a large number of the articles the honorable member refers to. {: .speaker-KQU} ##### Sir MALCOLM McEACHARN: -- Of course I have not a knowledge of these matters, and can only accept what the Treasurer tells me. **Mr. SYDNEY** SMITH (Macquarie).I do not wishto propose an amendment; as I have not circulated a list of the articles which I desire to add to the list of. exemptions. But I am told that this proposal will cover all instruments and appliances used by the medical profession, but will nob include the same appliances when, used by the patient. That is to say, if a, medical man uses these instruments and appliances they will be admitted free, but if surgeons prescribe their use for patients, duty will have to be paid. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir George Turner: -- If the honorable member will submit to me a list of the items in question. I will look into the matter. {: .speaker-L0K} ##### Mr SALMON:
Laanecoorie -- A list has been supplied to me, which I have gone through carefully. There are three items in it which should be placed upon, the exemption, list. The definition laid down bythe Custom-house is not altogether fair. It appears that if any surgical, appliance is capable of, being used by an individual . patient, duty is chargedupon it. The honorablemember for Macquarie has saidthat if, a surgeon uses the article it will not pay duty, but that if a patient, uses it, it will pay. That is not quite according to the facts of the case. If the instrument is one which is capable of being used by a patient, no matter who imports it, the duty has to be paid. There are surgical instruments that are used, both by medical men and patients. Those, I think, should be placed upon the exemption list. I therefore move - That the following exemptions be added : - "Surgical pessaries, glass rectal and vaginal tubes, indiarubber drainage tubing." Amendment agreed to. Amendment (by **Mr. Poynton)** agreed to- That the following exemptions be added : - Dentists' materials, namely, dental rubber, amalgams, and gold fillings, in pellets or cylinders.. {: .speaker-KRQ} ##### Mr SKENE:
Grampians -- I wish to call attention, to the next exemptions, "trophies won abroad." The Treasurer promised me to consider an amendment with regard to family plate. I understand that theright honorable gentleman has some objection to exempting heirlooms, and so on, but I have taken a provision from the Victorian Tariff; which possibly he may be induced to accept. I therefore move - That the following exemptions be added : - " Plate of gold or silver which has been in use, and which has been left by will, to, or inherited by, the importer, provided that such articles are not imported for sole, and that the intrinsic value thereof does not exceed 75 per cent, of the market value of new articles of a similar description." {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir GEORGE TURNER: -- I trust that the honorable member will not press his amendment. I would point out to him that the Customs authorities would.have no control, over the articles enumerated in his proposal. Consequently all sorts of plate might be introduced under, the pretext that people have inherited it. Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.. Mr.FISHER (Wide Bay). - I move- That the following exemption be added : - " Ambulance lantern slides." These slides are used exclusively for instructing ambulance classes, and are easily distinguishable. Amendment agreed to. {: .speaker-KIQ} ##### Mr MACDONALD-PATERSON: -- I move - That the following exemptions be added: - " Fire-brigade appliances, namely, fire escapes and fire ladders, ladder carriages and water towers." {: .speaker-KW6} ##### Mr Thomson: -- The question of the advisability of exempting these appliances from duty cropped up under another division of the Tariff. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir GEORGE TURNER: -- That is so; but I asked that it should be brought forward when the miscellaneous division was under consideration. {: .speaker-KW6} ##### Mr Thomson: -- There are other exemptions connected with that division which the Treasurer promised to consider. Are they to be brought up now? SirGEORGETURNER.- Allthematters which the Minister for Trade and Customs andmyself promised to consider are being looked up in *Hansard,* so that we may deal with them. But lest we should overlook anything, I should feel obliged if: honorable members would direct attention to any particular matter in which they may be interested. Amendment agreed to. **Sir MALCOLM** McEACHARN (Melbourne). - I wish to point out to the Treasurer that bag frames covered with leather ought to be admitted at the same rate as are the ordinary frames. These frames, when imported withthe fittings, are charged 20 per cent., and the desire of those in the trade is that they shall be admitted in the same way as ordinary frames. I ask the Treasurer to look into this matter. Then, in my judgment, buck hinges and leathercovered braized: buckles should be placed upon thef reelist. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir George Turner: -- I think that the honorable member had better submit a list of the articles with which he desires us to deal. {: .speaker-KQU} ##### Sir MALCOLM McEACHARN: -- If I may understand that these items will be attended to in the minor article list that is all I desire. I move - That the following exemption be added : - "Fibre board." This is a vegetable matter pressed into a board; and though it is very light it is as strong as steel. Picnic baskets, portmanteaus, and such like articles are made from it. It cannot possibly be made here, and there is only one place in the world in which it can be made - America. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir George Turner: -- There is a duty of 25 per cent. on portmanteaus made up, and when we are giving a protection, to that extent to the local manufacturers they might pay a little upon the materials they use. {: .speaker-KQU} ##### Sir MALCOLM McEACHARN: -- That is a departure from the principle upon which, we have acted in, the past in admitting, free many things which are not so important, simply because they could not be manufactured here. I am sorry that at the last moment we should depart from that principle. Amendment negatived. {: .speaker-KYT} ##### Mr KNOX:
Kooyong -- It will be within the recollection of the committee that we have imposed a duty of 20 per cent, upon glycerine, vaselene, and petroleum jelly. These articles are used in the manufacture of ammunition and cartridges which to-night we have decided shall be admitted free. I desire to ask the Treasurer to permit them to be admitted free. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir GEORGE TURNER: -- We have dealt with these articles after considerable discussion and declared that they should be dutiable. If now, in dealing with miscellaneous exemptions, articles which we have declared to be dutiable, are to be made free for some purposes, we may have even the question of mining machinery opened up again. I cannot consent to a proposal of this kind, which can be dealt with only upon a recommittal of the Tariff. **Mr. KNOX** (Kooyong). - I draw attention to the fact that the position is thoroughly contemplated under the 89th section of the Customs Act, which we have passed. I again ask the Treasurer to consider the extraordinary anomaly which now exists, that while the committee have refused to impose a duty upon articles which we know are manufactured here, we have imposed a considerable duty upon substances used in their manufacture. I have drawn attention to the matter, and hope that it will be considered by the Treasurer. Exemptions, as amended, agreed to. Division, as amended, agreed to. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir GEORGE TURNER: -- We have now finished with the Tariff, with the exception of such matters as may require reconsideration. I trust they will be as few as possible, but there are some matters which my honorable colleague the Minister for Trade and Customs and I have promised to look into. As soon as possible we will have the particulars printed in order that honorable members may know exactly what we propose to do before we commence the discussion of the proposals. It would not be fair to ask honorable members to discuss the items without having at least a day to look into them. In the meantime I hope to be able to circulate the financial inforformation I have been collecting during the last few days, as I have all the information I require with the exception of that which is to come from the far away State of Western Australia. On Thursday next we may be able to resume the consideration of Tariff items, but on Tuesday next the Minister for Trade and Customs or myself will make a statement as to the day when we shall be able to deal with them, and to finish the matter which has been before us so long. I think I should be wanting in gratitude if I did not thank honorable members on both sides of the committee for the courtesy shown me since I have had, in consequence of the. unavoidable absence of the Minister for Trade and Customs, to undertake this duty alone. Honorable members have known that I have been suffering to some extent from my accident, and they have given me every assistance. We have worked harmoniously ; and have discussed the Tariff in a friendly spirit, which I hope will continue until we have finished with it. I hope that when we have finished with it, it will be a Tariff with which nearly all will be satisfied. **Sir WILLIAM** McMILLAN (Wentworth). - I should like to reciprocate the very friendly remarks of my right honorable friend. Those who have watched him day after day, often not in the best of health, will have come to the conclusion that no more careful consideration could have been given to a subject than the right honorable gentleman has given to the Tariff. We all regret the family affliction and personal illness which has prevented the Minister for Trade and Customs from being in his place to-night. I just wish to say that it would guide the committee in its further deliberations if the right honorable gentleman could have printed a copy of the Tariff, showing in parallel columns the original duties proposed and the duties as altered by the committee. {: .speaker-KWT} ##### Sir George Turner: -- That is shown on the latest editions of the Tariff. Progress reported. {: .page-start } page 10920 {:#debate-7} ### SPECIAL ADJOURNMENT Resolved (motion by **Mr. Deakin)** - That the House at its rising adjourn until Tuesday next. {: .page-start } page 10920 {:#debate-8} ### ADJOURNMENT {:#subdebate-8-0} #### Federal Capital. - Order of Business. - Judiciary Bill Motion (by **Mr. Deakin)** proposed. That the House do now adjourn. {: .speaker-L17} ##### Mr WILKS:
Dalley -- As the House is adjourning until Tuesday, I should like to ask the Attorney-General whether there is any truth in the statement made in the Melbourne press to-day, that it is the intention of the Government to abandon the visit of inspection to the proposed capital sites. If so, it is just as well that the fact should be known, because this is a matter of great importance to New South Wales and the Commonwealth, {: .speaker-L2G} ##### Sir WILLIAM McMILLAN:
Wentworth -- The Government may not be able to say what the. order of business will be on Tuesday next, but I understand that the first measure for our consideration will be the Public Service Bill, with the amendments of the other Chamber. As this adjournment until Tuesday gives honorable members a little more time than we expected, the Opposition will be very glad to fall in with any arrangement the Government may make to reduce the Easter holidays as much as possible, so that the trip to view the proposed capital sites may be undertaken. There is a general feeling, now that the Minister for Home Affairs has elaborated a programme, that it might, on the whole, be better to carry out the intention this session. It would be well, therefore, if an early intimation were made next week as to the exact dates on which the Government have decided for the expedition. {: .speaker-K4E} ##### Mr CONROY:
Werriwa -- I should like to ask the Attorney-General whether the reason assigned in the Melbourne *Argus* of yesterday for not putting forward the Judiciary Bill is correct The statement made by the *Argus* was that the AttorneyGeneral had decided not to allow honorable members an opportunity of reading the J udiciary Bill before it was introduced, because ho felt that it would open up a great field of discussion amongst lawyers who were opposed to it. But this is a measure which ought to be debated widely not only amongst legal members in the House, but in the legal profession throughout Australia. It is a Bill which is fraught with consequences to the whole community, because it may add enormously to the expenses of litigation. I trust we shall have an adequate opportunity to consider the provisions of the Bill. {: .speaker-009MD} ##### Mr DEAKIN:
AttorneyGeneral · Ballarat · Protectionist -- The Government have not so far abandoned the intention of asking honorable members to pay a visit to the proposed federal capital sites. It has been impossible to fix any exact dates, because, as yet, it is not clearwhether business will permit of the visit taking place at the time suggested. The desire is to go before the weather becomes too inclement, seeing that it will be a burdensome and weary trip under any circumstances. On Tuesday next the business available for the House will be the Senate's amendments on the Public Service Bill, the Postal Rates Bill, and the second reading of the Judiciary Bill. That Bill will be circulated among honorable members as soon as thelast verbal revision, which is now being undertaken, is completed, and so far from avoiding the criticisms of' the members of my own profession, I do now, and shall then, invite their closest attention to every one of its details. Question resolved in the affirmative. House adjourned at 12.50 a.m. (Thursday).

Cite as: Australia, House of Representatives, Debates, 12 March 1902, viewed 7 November 2016, <http://historichansard.net/hofreps/1902/19020312_reps_1_8/>.