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PM's Press Conference: Rearranging The Cabinet Chairs

PM's Press Conference 24/4/17: Rearranging The Cabinet Chairs

The Prime Minister today announced a new cabinet, replacing departing Education Minister Hekia Parata and Foreign Minister Murray McCully, as well as some other changes. The new ministers will be sworn in next Tuesday. The first meeting will be on May 8.

[Press release: PM announces changes to ministerial portfolios]

In his opening statement Mr English praised the departing Ministers' achievements as well as incoming Foreign Minister Gerry Brownlee's "unceasing efforts" on the Christchurch rebuild.

Questions on the reshuffle included whether Mr Brownlee's person style (which the PM described as "blunt when needed" but "diplomatic when needed") was suited to diplomacy, Amy Adam's role incharge of the Government's housing construction programme, the lack of Te Reo Māori speakers in cabinet, and whether Nick Smith had been 'stripped' of any responsibilities or done anything wrong (the PM said he hadn't).

Mr English said he would go to Queenstown for the meeting of intelligence agencies from the Five Eyes nations. He described it as an opportunity to 'reaffirm relationships' and said revamped legislation and financial resources for NZ security agencies had fixed any perception New Zealand was not pulling its weight.

Other topics included the Civil Aviation Authority investigting whether to impose new controls on travel with larger electronic devices, ongoing discussion with Australia on how their new immigration changes would affect New Zealanders, and North Korean military threats to Australia.

Click a link to play audio (or right-click to download) in either
MP3 format or in OGG format.


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