In a communique from its sixth meeting in Brisbane on 29 May, 2009, the Council for the Australian Federation (CAF), which comprises all State Premiers and Territory Chief Ministers and is currently chaired by the Honourable Anna Bligh MP, Premier of Queensland, announced it had discussed the Productivity Commission’s consideration of existing parallel importation restrictions in relation to books. CAF reiterated that the States and Territories do not support any changes to the present arrangements. Removal of current regulation would damage Australia’s culture and creative industries and have adverse effects on employment for very little benefit. States and Territories agree the Productivity Commission’s report should be discussed at the next COAG meeting. Chaired by the Premier of Queensland, the meeting was attended by Premiers from Victoria, New South Wales, South Australia and Tasmania and the Chief Minister of the Australian Capital Territory (ACT). The Premier of Western Australia joined the meeting by telephone. The Chief Minister of the Northern Territory was an apology. Treasurers also attended the meeting from Victoria, South Australia and Queensland.
I'm delighted to have been asked to deliver the address at the Society of Editors NSW 30th Anniversary Dinner. I was an early member of the Society, and President in 1986, and I have very fond memories of it. The Dinner will take place on Tuesday, 7 July, 2009 at 6.30 for 7 pm. The location is the Italian Village Restaurant (Florence Room). Tickets are available from the Society of Editors NSW. My address was later published in Blue Pencil and is available here.