Page 4167 - Week 13 - Thursday, 25 November 1993

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ACTTAB - Contract with VITAB Ltd

MR DE DOMENICO: Madam Speaker, my question without notice is to the Deputy Chief Minister in his capacity as Minister for Sport. I refer him to questions the other day about VITAB Ltd. Is it true that the Minister has had discussions with Mr Bob Hawke, who is one of the majors in the company VITAB? If it is true, how many times has he spoken to Mr Hawke, and when was the first time he spoke to Mr Hawke?

MR BERRY: Yes, I have had discussions with Mr Hawke a few times. They have not been very long ones. My first recollection of a discussion with Mr Hawke was, I think, around about 1975 or 1976 - - -

Mr De Domenico: "About VITAB" I said.

MR BERRY: At the 1973 ACTU conference.

Mr Kaine: I have had a few chats with him too, but I have never mentioned VITAB once.

MR BERRY: I mentioned it more than once. I met with Mr Hawke in relation to the VITAB matter once, and that was at the launch of the agreement. That was at ACTTAB and it was probably on the TV. I think Mr Hawke's picture was on the television, not mine; but I was there. I shook his hand and we exchanged a few words, a few niceties, and we both agreed that the - - -

Mr De Domenico: That was the only time you have spoken to him about VITAB?

MR BERRY: I had not met him on that issue up to that point.

MR DE DOMENICO: I have a supplementary question, Madam Speaker. Seeing that Mr Berry is the Minister who is not prepared to hide things, is he prepared to table a copy of the agreement between ACTTAB and VICTAB, the Victorian TAB, and also VITAB Ltd, the offshore company that Mr Hawke is involved with?

MR BERRY: When last this issue was raised I said that in relation to VITAB I would consider the matter. At this point I am inclined not to.

Mrs Carnell: But you do not hide things.

Mr De Domenico: But you are the Minister who is not prepared to hide things.


MR BERRY: Hang on! Do you want to ask some more questions and let me sit down for a while? I am not going to stand here all day while you harangue me. I am saying to you that I am not inclined to table the contract with VITAB because it is a commercial-in-confidence document. In relation to the agreement between - - -

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