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The present paper considers briefly some conceptual issues associated with, the measurement of protection and presents estimates of the level of protection received by a number of Australia's rural industries. It then discusses briefly some factors relevant to the interpretation of these measures, particularly in making comparisons between protection accorded to agriculture and that accorded to secondary industry. In considering the estimates of protection levels provided, it is necessary to recognise two things: first, that the estimates are very approximate, doing little more than suggest orders of magnitude; second, that they have a limited meaning and must be used with caution. Providing these limitations are recognised, such estimates can serve a useful function; the alternative to attempts at explicit quantitative measurement is frequently implicit quantitative assessment based on imperfect or incomplete information.


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