26 August 2018
It is an honour to be asked to join the Cabinet of Prime Minister Scott Morrison as Minister for Defence Industry.
Last year I worked closely with Christopher Pyne to develop the Defence Export Strategy, including the creation of the $3.8 billion Defence Export Facility managed by Efic.
I look forward to continuing Minister Pyne’s work to build an Australian defence industry that advances the Australian economy and creates and sustains Australian jobs.
It has been a privilege to work alongside Julie Bishop for the past three years. Her sterling performance as Australia’s Foreign Minister has promoted Australia’s place in the world.
As Trade Minister, I pursued the most ambitious trade agenda in Australia’s history, launching free trade agreement negations with the European Union, Hong Kong, the Pacific Alliance and re-launched negations with Indonesia. I am confident Simon Birmingham will advance these negotiations to conclusion.
I am proud to have created more opportunities for Australian exporters by concluding the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership; the Agreement to Amend the Singapore-Australia Free Trade Agreement (SAFTA); the Peru-Australia Free Trade Agreement (PAFTA); and the Pacific Agreement on Closer Economic Relations Plus (PACER Plus).
Under a Coalition Government, the tourism industry continues to go from strength to strength. As Minister I secured record funding for Tourism Australia, which helped deliver record numbers of international tourists visiting Australia and spending record amounts. Earlier this year I convened a steering committee of tourism industry leaders to develop the next long term tourism strategy. I have no doubt Simon Birmingham will continue to drive this initiative to ensure our vibrant tourism industry continues to grow.
I thank officials from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Austrade, Tourism Australia and Efic for their sound advice and tireless efforts in implementing the Government’s agenda.