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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 5 Hansard (8 May) . . Page.. 1303 ..

Mr Humphries: It is a pretty safe bet to make, isn't it, Ted?

MR QUINLAN: Yes, it is, but it is a reasonable challenge to make in light of the claims you made and the arguments you put forward yesterday, Mr Humphries. I reckon a bottle of Penfold's Bin 389 1998 would be okay.

Economic white paper

MR SMYTH: My question is also to Mr Quinlan, as minister for business. Mr Quinlan, the Canberra Times reported on Mr Stanhope's address to the ACT and Region Chamber of Commerce and Industry at the National Press Club as follows:

Chief Minister Jon Stanhope flagged a tight Budget yesterday, focused on employment opportunities. Addressing the ACT and Region Chamber of Commerce and Industry at the National Press Club, he said that the Government would remove duplicated initiatives, and there would be no "ad hoc" investments in new businesses. Any funding or regulatory reforms designed to assist business development would need to fit into the strategic framework of the Economic White Paper.

Treasurer, will your government leave all existing business programs in place, or will you make decisions on business programs for the next financial year without the white paper?

MR QUINLAN: To some extent I should leave Mr Stanhope to clarify what was reported in the Canberra Times on his behalf. However, let me just say generally that we have reformed advice committees that will interact with government. We have made them more representative of business rather than representative of a circle of friends.

Mr Humphries: So Jeremy Pyner has left us, has he?

MR QUINLAN: Well, they also needed balance, Mr Humphries.

Mr Humphries: He is no friend of this government.

MR QUINLAN: We did not dismiss out of hand all of those people who were on committees before.

Mr Humphries: Because you could not find anyone else to go on, that is why.

MR QUINLAN: We have. We created a representative balance. We rather figure that the trade union sector is representative and it is a stakeholder in what happens in industry in the ACT. Certainly, in the overall context, our door is not closed to business propositions during the development of the white paper.

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