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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1996 Week 8 Hansard (25 June) . . Page.. 2081 ..

MR HUMPHRIES: Mr Speaker, the number of jobs lost from the reported closure of 14 other ACT supermarkets is obviously something I cannot possibly tell you right now, and presumably it would be difficult even to take the question on notice, given that these things very often have not been ascertained. Certainly, there are estimates that have ranged from 600 to 1,000 jobs lost in this Territory in the last four years or so from redundancies because of small business closure. I cannot tell this Assembly - - -

Mr Berry: There are 2,500 more unemployed because of Mrs Carnell.

MR SPEAKER: Order! Mr Humphries is answering Mr Horodny's question.

MR HUMPHRIES: Why do you think those sorts of jobs are disappearing, Mr Berry? It is because of the policy that you pursued. I cannot believe this. Those opposite have criticised us for the loss of jobs and yet they say, "Do not affect the trading hours of the large supermarkets. We do not care about the small supermarkets who have lost employment, who have lost jobs, in the last four or five years". Have you not noticed that? Where do you live? Do you not ever drive past your local neighbourhood shops? Have you not noticed what has happened to those local shops? Do you think it is in the interests of anybody in this Territory that those jobs and those shops should disappear? Of course it is not.

Ms McRae: Nothing you are doing is going to help, Mr Humphries. I would give up. Nothing you are doing will help.

MR SPEAKER: Order! Mr Humphries is answering Ms Horodny's question. Other members will have the chance to ask questions themselves.

MR HUMPHRIES: At least we are trying. At least we care enough about what is happening in those local centres to act in this area. If those opposite do not give a damn, that is their lookout, not mine.

Retail Trading Hours

MS FOLLETT: My question is directed to Mr De Domenico as the Minister responsible for business. I ask the Minister whether he is aware that the Hyndes report, a report which was commissioned for you and presented to you in relation to the problems faced by small suburban supermarkets, actually said:

It would be quite wrong to suggest that competition from the Town Centres is the only source of the problem.

Minister, what analysis have you done which proves that forcing the town centre supermarkets to close early will prevent marginal supermarkets from failing?

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