Deputy Prime Minister
Minister for Foreign Affairs
Minister for Jobs, Skills and Workplace Relations
Minister for Regional Australia, Regional Development and Local Government
Minister for the Arts
Minister for Defence
Minister for Health and Ageing
Minister for Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs
Minister for Infrastructure and Transport
Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy
Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Digital Productivity
Minister for Innovation, Industry and Science
Minister for Finance and Deregulation
Minister for Schools, Early Childhood and Youth
Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry
Minister for Sustainable Population, Communities, Environment and Water
Minister for Resources, Energy and Tourism
Minister for Immigration and Citizenship
Minister for Trade
Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency
Minister for Human Services
Minister for Social Inclusion
Minister for Home Affairs and Justice
Minister for Privacy and FOI
Minister for Employment Participation and Childcare
Minister for Indigenous Employment and Economic Development
Minister for Sport
Minister for Social Housing and Homelessness
Minister for Small Business
Minister Assisting the Minister for Tourism
Minister for Veterans’ Affairs and Defence Science and Personnel
Minister for Financial Services and Superannuation
Minister for Mental Health and Ageing
Special Minister of State
Minister for Defence Materiel
Education, Employment and Workplace Relations
Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs
Climate Change and Energy Efficiency
Foreign Affairs and Trade
Sustainable Population, Communities, Environment and Water
Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry
Health and Ageing
Infrastructure and Transport
Immigration and Citizenship
Prime Minister and Cabinet
Foreign Affairs and Trade
Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs
TRANSCRIPT OF PRESS CONFERENCE, MELBOURNE SEPTEMBER 11, 2010
PM: I’m here today to announce the shape of the new ministry of the Gillard Government, and first and foremost can I say the new ministry delivers on my promise to have a dedicated Department of Regional Australia that will be within my portfolio as Prime Minister, and it will be led by a dedicated Cabinet minister, Simon Crean.
Simon Crean will work with a team of ministers and parliamentary secretaries, who will seek to represent regional Australia to the Government. This is delivering on the focus that I agreed with the independents in the House of Representatives. It’s delivering on a promise to regional Australia to focus on their needs.
Secondly, the ministry continues a strong emphasis on economic management and the creation of jobs. Of course, the Australian economy has emerged from the global financial crisis the envy of the world. That has happened because we have sought to provide stable economic management and we have sought to focus on jobs.
That kind of economic stability will continue, as will our approach to ensure the budget comes to surplus in 2013.
Wayne Swan will, of course, continue as Treasurer to lead the economic team.
Senator Penny Wong will become the Minister for Finance, to work with Wayne Swan ensuring the budget comes to surplus in 2013.
Senator Chris Evans, our leader in the Senate, Senator Chris Evans from Western Australia, will lead a strategic focus on jobs as the new Minister for Jobs, Skills and Workplace Relations.
Craig Emerson will be a new Cabinet member and Minister for Trade, and obviously will continue to travel the world to ensure that our country gets the best opportunities to sell the things that we make so well to the rest of the world.
Martin Ferguson will continue with his key role, working in energy; working with the resources sector; and of course working in tourism, too.
Our focus on skills continues. During the election campaign and over a number of years, Australians, I believe, have become familiar with my core belief that having an economy that offers people the benefit of work is vital, but of course making sure that we focus on education is vital – giving every child a chance of a great school education.
That’s why I have asked Peter Garrett to be the Minister for Schools, Early Childhood and Youth, to continue a key focus on the education reforms that this Government has started to deliver and will continue to deliver to make good on our promise as a nation to give every child a fair go.
The economic team will also include Kim Carr, continuing to work in his important portfolio of Industry, Innovation, Science and Research; and Anthony Albanese, working in his important portfolio of Transport and Infrastructure.
The work of this team across human capital, infrastructure, innovation, industry policy, is vital to our jobs, productivity and participation agenda.
Of course, Anthony Albanese will continue to lead the Government’s work in the House of Representatives as the Leader of Government Business.
The foreign affairs and defence team will be Kevin Rudd as Minister for Foreign Affairs and Stephen Smith as the Minister for Defence.
Stephen Smith will also continue in his portfolio or obligation as Deputy Leader of Government Business in the House of Representatives, working with Anthony Albanese.
Then, this new ministry also delivers on my promise that we will deliver a sustainable Australia and a sustainable population policy for this country. I’ve asked Tony Burke to lead this work as a new Minister for a Sustainable Australia, working in population policy, on the environment, water, and also housing policy.
I’ve asked Greg Combet to join the Cabinet and lead the Government’s work on climate change.
I have asked Chris Bowen to lead the Government’s work on immigration and citizenship. Of course, our focus is always on making sure that we keep border protection strong, and Chris Bowen will be focussed on that work.
Stephen Conroy will continue with his special responsibilities, including the responsibility for broadband, but we will build on that with Steve Conroy also serving as a minister assisting me to ensure that across the whole of government, whether it’s health, whether it’s education, whether it’s any part of government, we are working to maximise what the broadband network can deliver in those service delivery areas.
Nicola Roxon will continue as the Minister for Health and Ageing.
Jenny Macklin will continue in her portfolio covering families and community services and Indigenous affairs.
Robert McClelland will continue as the Attorney-General.
Joseph Ludwig will move into a new area of responsibility as the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry.
This is the core Cabinet team.
Then, also serving in the ministry I have invited the following members to serve.
Tanya Plibersek will take a new responsibility to be the Minister for Human Services and the Minister for Social Inclusion. Tanya has done extraordinary work in her responsibility for housing. She will now move to this new challenge. Of course, as many people would know, Tanya is looking forward to taking a short period of maternity leave as she has her child, and of course when Tanya returns from maternity leave and beyond she will continue to be a strong member of the Government team, and of course she is a woman with an extraordinary future.
Brendan O’Connor will move to take additional responsibilities. He is currently the Minister for Home Affairs. He will move to also be the Minister for Justice, and he will work with me on additional responsibilities in my portfolio for privacy and information.
Senator Mark Arbib will also take on a new role and greatly increased responsibility. Senator Mark Arbib will serve in the area of Indigenous employment and economic development, something so important to ensuring that we close the gap for Indigenous Australians. He will also serve as the Minister for Social Housing, with a key focus on homelessness, and he will serve as the Minister for Sport.
Kate Ellis is also stepping up to new responsibilities, particularly the responsibility for employment participation, a strong focus on jobs, working with Chris Evans, as well as continuing her connection with child care policy.
Warren Snowdon will serve in the portfolios of Veterans Affairs and also Defence Science and Personnel. People would be aware that Alan Griffin, who served in comparable portfolios, has chosen for personal reasons not to make himself available for the ministry.
Senator Nick Sherry will continue to serve the Government, working in important areas, and most particularly important economic areas. He will be assisting on tourism and will have a sharp focus on the needs of small business.
Then, of course, the ministry is being strengthened by four new members.
Firstly, Bill Shorten, who will step up to the responsibility of being Assistant Treasurer, as well as working in superannuation and financial services; Mark Butler, who will join Nicola Roxon in a focus on health and will be particularly focussed on ageing and mental health; Gary Gray, who will become the Special Minister of State; and Jason Clare, who will have a focus on defence procurement in the Defence Materiel portfolio.
As you would see from the ministerial list, Justine Elliot has moved to being a parliamentary secretary. That has been done at her request, obviously for family and other reasons, but she will serve as Parliamentary Secretary for Trade.
The depth of the Labor team, I believe, is shown by the parliamentary secretary list. People would see there a large number of new names. Overall, we’ve got nine new parliamentary secretaries, showing the depth of the team.
People would also see that through the allocations here, through ministers and parliamentary secretaries, we do have a person dedicated to the voice of regional Australia right around the country.
I’m very happy to take any questions.
JOURNALIST: Prime Minister, the (inaudible) Kevin Rudd, you know, obviously you had in the past. (inaudible) put that behind you now?
PM: Of course.
JOURNALIST: Will you be moving into The Lodge soon, and have you got any plans to visit the troops overseas?
PM: Oh, look, we’ll be making those arrangements over time. From my point of view there’s no particular rush in terms of moving into The Lodge. Obviously, at the appropriate point, too, I would be seeking to visit our troops serving overseas.
JOURNALIST: Prime Minister, is it unusual that Stephen Smith made his announcement before your actual (inaudible)
PM: Look, just a question of logistics and his timing and commitments and mine.
JOURNALIST: Prime Minister, what’s the reason for giving Peter Garrett Minister for Schools, Early Childhood and Youth, away from environment?
PM: Well, I want Peter Garrett to continue the Government’s record of reforms in school education. Peter Garrett is a man who’s been motivated across his life to address disadvantage in our community, and if you are serious about addressing disadvantage – whether it’s closing the gap for Indigenous Australians or whether it’s looking at Australians who are born into poorer and more disadvantaged circumstances generally – the best way of creating fairness, equity and opportunity is to give kids a great education.
I believe that with absolute passion, as does Peter Garrett, so this is a special new responsibility for him.
JOURNALIST: And did you talk to the independents about Simon Crean taking on the role of Minister for Regional Australia?
PM: Look, I of course made all of the selections here, but I’m well aware that Simon Crean, over a long period of time, has exhibited a passion for localism, for the embrace of localism, for the embrace of regional development, and I’m sure the independents know that.
JOURNALIST: And what was their reaction to, what was their reaction to you telling them that Simon Crean would be, in effect, their minister?
PM: Well, look, I haven’t specifically confirmed it to them, but I’m confirming it to everybody now.
JOURNALIST: Mark Arbib and Bill Shorten are-
PM: -Just a tickle at the back of my throat.
JOURNALIST: It seems quite likely that people will, may interpret that as looking after them after the role that they played in bringing you the leadership – any response to that?
PM: Well, Mark Arbib was a minister, and he is stepping up to additional responsibilities, and that’s because he’s performed well as a minister. He’s shown a particular passion for Indigenous employment, and that’s why he retains a connection with that, and this is a broader, new role for him. It’s based on the capacity and work he’s done so far as a minister.
Bill Shorten is a very talented member of the federal parliament. He did extraordinary work as parliamentary secretary in the disabilities area, which I think has been recognised broadly, and if you talk to anybody in the advocacy community for people with disabilities they will talk glowingly of the role Bill Shorten played. Given he’s shown that kind of merit and capacity, then it obviously makes sense to offer him a further opportunity at the next stage, and that’s in the ministerial ranks.
JOURNALIST: Prime Minister, who is taking over Mr Shorten’s responsibility for disability?
PM: You will see the way we’ve done the parliamentary secretary list there that we’ve indicated what portfolios people will be connected to, so you would see in the area of family and community services – where disability lies – there will be two parliamentary secretaries working there. You can see that Jan McLucas is there and Julie Collins. It’ll become a question for Jenny Macklin how she allocates individual duties.
JOURNALIST: Prime Minister, (inaudible) an opportunity to have more women in the ministry?
PM: Well, look, across the team there’s a large number of women and, of course, I lead the Government where for the first time we have a woman as Prime Minister. I think in those circumstances people understand that Labor is committed to hearing the voice of women. It’s happening right at the top.
JOURNALIST: Prime Minister, I see Anthony Byrne’s been dumped as a parl sec (inaudible) is there any reason, particularly, why (inaudible)
PM: Look, there have been a few changes in parliamentary secretaries. Obviously, the role of parliamentary secretary is to give people an opportunity. Anthony Byrne performed well and I’d be looking forward to him getting opportunities in the future, including opportunities directly in the parliament.
JOURNALIST: Prime Minister, hoping for a win for the Doggies tonight?
PM: I certainly am, certainly am, and I’ll be there to cheer the Bulldogs on.
JOURNALIST: (inaudible) would you give to Brad Johnson (inaudible)
PM: I think, well, I knew that, I was thinking about the message. I’d say, after the period that’s been, a win’s a win, and if you can get there by one point it’s still a win.
. Okay, so who would be in my unity cabinet?
. This Swan fellow... what's he really like?