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From The Sydney Morning Herald, Letters page, 19 Nov 2001

Going out of business or going out of fashion?

It is time for the Government to immediately put in place measures to address one of the most ravaged sectors of the economy - Persian carpets. Not a weekend foes by without the spectacle of yet another major Persian carpet retailer being placed into receivership.

Liquidators are acting in a merciless fashion, forcing these businesses to sell all their quality stock at simply crazy prices, sometimes as much as 95 per cent off the original wholesale price.

In Canberra we recently had a tragic episode where 40,000 Persian carpets were trucked into the city from interstate and all stock had to be sold in just one weekend to meet creditors' demands. That means a Persian carpet had to be bought by every 2.5 households in the region just for this small business to meet its debts.

Urgent and substantial government subsidies are needed to keep the Persian carpet sector afloat.

John Howard needs to act now because I personally cannot tolerate another TV or newspaper campaign telling us that another Persian carpet retailer has been ruined by so-called market forces.

Kim Meredith, Ainslie (ACT) 15 Nov 2001.


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