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future payments

dairy conference decision

WELLINGTON, this day. greement that in the special circumstances the dairy industry no cl aim to the lump sum payments being made by Britain to New Zealand was expressed by the Dominion dairy conference yesterday. it was insisted, however, that in future payments for produce should be made directly and in full without being split in any way.

The question was raised by Mr. A. J. Sinclair, who said the industry was still not completely satisfied about the disposal of lump sum payments amounting to £28,000,000 or £35,000,000 in New Zealand currency. If Mr. W. Goodfellow, who represented the industry in London when the price increases were negotiated a year ago said definitely they were not entitled to any part of the lump sum paymr.nts they would be satisfied for all time. Had Mr. Goodfellow ever given such an assurance, he asked. The chairman, Mr. W. E. Hale, said that when Mr. Goodfellow returned to New Zealand he did not give the Dairy Board any such assurance, but explained he had had to undertake to treat matters disclosed during negotiations as confidential. On the suggestion of the Prime Minister a joint committee was set up by the Dairy Board and Meat Board to investigate the whole matter. He had reported the findings of that committee to ward conferences. The committee was satisfied that lump sum payments were not tied to production. No Claim Possible

The question was not whether Mr. Goodfellow was satisfied but whether the industry was satisfied, said Mr. C. P. Agar, a member of the joint committee. If there had been any claim which producers could have made to lump sums the committee would have made it on their behalf. "If the producers cannot accept our assurance that they have no claim to the funds they should get someone in whom they have greater confidence in the future," he said. Statements made "by the joint committee had always been qualified by the phrase "information submitted to," said Mr. Sinclair. That was why the producers felt they were entitled to know a little more. Had the committee received all the information it required?, he asked. "The information disclosed to us was a complete file of correspondence on the negotiations between the Government of this country and the Government of Britain," said Mr. Agar. "Not one iota was kept from us once we had given an assurance that the State documents concerned would be treated as confidential. "What Mr. Agar has said is to the very best of my belief, true," said Mr. W. W. Mulholland, another member of the committee. "I say emphatically that as far as I could possibly learn, not only in committee but outside, the payments were specific payments not directly connected with our produce," he said. "However, there is in the method a great danger to the primary industries of New Zealand. It must not be repeated. The circumstances which justified it cannot recur. An attempt to repeat it would be an attempt to divide the prices of primary producers into two, and there must be a motive for such an attempt. While I defend the present instance with the complete belief that I am stating the truth I realise there is a danger there. 4 "Fair to Producers" Mr. W. Marshall, a third member of the committee, confirmed Mr. Agar's remarks. He was not only of the Opinion that producers had no claim to the funds, but m all circumstances was satisfied the final arrangement was fair to the producers. in future trade agreements With the United Kingdom, however, there should be no repetition of such methods, because It had been impossible to convince farmers the payments were equitable. Mr. Agar said lump sum payments which Were to be made during the next two years had not been considered in fixing the new price. If they did not belong to producers in the future what ground was there for believing they had belonged to them in the past. Mr, H. E. Blyde said the conference should let the industry know it was satisfied that producers haa no claim to lump sum payments but Should put it on record th&t in future prices should be directly related to produce, and not split up.

His motion to that effect was carried.

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Bibliographic details

PRIMARY PRODUCE, Auckland Star, Volume LXXVI, Issue 183, 4 August 1945

Word Count

PRIMARY PRODUCE Auckland Star, Volume LXXVI, Issue 183, 4 August 1945

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