Communications Minister, Stephen Conroy, gets promoted with more responsibilities

Communications Minister to take on whole-of-government role to ‘maximise what the broadband network can deliver’ as Senator Kate Lundy gets cabinet role

Communications Minister, Senator Stephen Conroy, has retained his position in the Gillard Government’s cabinet with an increase in responsibility. Former shadow IT minister, Senator Kate Lundy, has also gained a place in the cabinet.

Former Minister for Climate Change, Energy Efficiency and Water, Senator Penny Wong, has been picked as the next Finance Minister to replace Lindsay Tanner.

The announcement was made around midday by Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, at a press conference in Canberra. She said Conroy would continue his role with the additional task of a whole-of-government tech role.

“Stephen Conroy will continue with his special responsibilities including the responsibility for broadband,” Gillard said. “But we will build on that with Steve Conroy also serving as a minister assisting me 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.”

The move is in line with Conroy’s comments to support a minister with whole of Government responsibilities for technology. Although there is no dedicated IT minister, Conroy is expected to advise Gillard on a range of tech issues across all portfolios.

The appointment of Wong to the Finance Minister position means she will take on responsibility for the Gershon review and its sweeping effects on Government ICT procurement and employment.

Former shadow IT minister, Senator Kate Lundy, has also been appointed to the role of Parliamentary Secretary for Immigration and Citizenship as well as Prime Minister and Cabinet. This will give her more access to the Prime Minister as well as more responsibilities.

Lundy told ARN she was very excited with the appointment and would continue to push for a new IT minister position.

"[The Prime Minister] has a very clear understanding of my committment to IT and I think that's one of the reasons that she's appointed me as her parliamentary secretary," she said "I think it's a very important insight into the status the Prime Minister gives to Communications and IT that she's wanting a closer association with the Portfolios.

"I think it's very good news for IT, for broadband, for what we're going to achieve as a nation online. It's great news all round."

Penny Wong's rumoured move from the climate change portfolio to Minister for Finance and Deregulation went ahead, Kevin Rudd got Foreign Affairs, and the man he replaces, Stephen Smith, moves into Senator John Faulkner's old job as Minister for Defence.

The cabinet is expected to be sworn in by Tuesday, September 14, at the very latest.

The full Cabinet line-up is:

  • Julia Gillard, Prime Minister
  • Wayne Swan, Deputy Prime Minister, Treasurer
  • Kevin Rudd, Minister for Foreign Affairs
  • Chris Evans, Minister for Jobs, Skills and Workplace Relations
  • Simon Crean, Minister for Regional Australia, Regional Development and Local Government, Minister for the Arts
  • Stephen Smith, Minister for Defence
  • Nicola Roxon, Minister for Health and Ageing
  • Jenny Macklin, Minister for Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs
  • Anthony Albanese, Minister for Infrastructure and Transport
  • Stephen Conroy, Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Digital Productivity
  • Kim Carr, Minister for Innovation, Industry and Science
  • Penny Wong, Minister for Finance and Deregulation
  • Greg Combet, Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency
  • Peter Garrett, Minister for Schools, Early Childhood and Youth
  • Robert McClelland, Attorney-General
  • Joseph Ludwig, Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry
  • Tony Burke, Minister for Sustainable Population, Communities, Environment and Water
  • Martin Ferguson, Minister for Resources, Energy and Tourism
  • Chris Bowen, Minister for Immigration and Citizenship
  • Craig Emerson, Minister for Trade

Outer Ministry

  • Tanya Plibersek, Minister for Human Services, Minister for Social Inclusion
  • Brendan O’Connor, Minister for Home Affairs and Justice, Minister for Privacy and FOI
  • Kate Ellis, Minister for Employment Participation and Childcare
  • Mark Butler, Minister for Mental Health and Ageing
  • Gary Gray, Special Minister of State
  • Jason Clare, Minister for Defence Material
  • Mark Arbib,, Minister for Indigenous Employment and Economic Development Minister for Sport Minister for Social Housing and Homelessness
  • Nick Sherry Minister for Small Business, Minister Assisting the Minister for Tourism
  • Warren Snowdon, Minister for Veterans’ Affairs and Defence Science and Personnel
  • Bill Shorten, Assistant Treasurer Minister for Financial Services and Superannuation

Parliamentary Secretaries

  • David Bradbury, Treasury
  • Jacinta Collins Education, Employment and Workplace Relations
  • Julie Collins Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs
  • Mark Dreyfus, Climate Change and Energy Efficiency, Cabinet Secretary
  • Justine Elliot, Foreign Affairs and Trade
  • Don Farrell, Sustainable Population, Communities, Environment and Water
  • David Feeney, Defence
  • Mike Kelly, Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry
  • Catherine King, Health and Ageing, Infrastructure and Transport
  • Kate Lundy, Immigration and Citizenship, Prime Minister and Cabinet
  • Richard Marles, Foreign Affairs and Trade
  • Jan McLucas, Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs

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