Mining and Heavy Industries

Resources ministry goes to Nationals, Frydenberg gets merged role

The new-look Turnbull Ministry includes a new, 35-year-old resources minister, and sees former resources and energy minister Josh Frydenberg given a new, hybrid role.

Turnbull, whose Coalition party won the July 2 election by the slimmest of margins, announced his new ministry on Monday.

There were few major changes in terms of front bench personnel, but some of the key changes occurred in relation to the mining and energy sectors.

Frydenberg, who before the election was the minister for resources and energy, was appointed to a new title, minister for environment and energy.

While Greenpeace welcomed the merging of the energy and environment roles, it was not happy with the appointment of Frydenberg, who during his time in charge of resources defended the moral case for coal mining.

Nationals MP Matt Canavan, just 35 years of age, was named as new resources minister.

Former environment minister Greg Hunt was moved to science and innovation.

The Queensland Resources Council welcomed all three appointments, calling it a “Cabinet trifecta for [the] resources sector”.

QRC boss Michael Roche congratulated Turnbull on his ministerial choices.

“The sector has won the trifecta,” Roche said.

“The resources sector requires steady safe hands to ride through the commodities downturn and in the face of a relentless green activist campaign.”

Canavan, who previously held the role of minister for Northern Australia – a ministry he will maintain – “has already proven to be a champion of the sector in Queensland,” Roche said.

“I am confident he will be a strong voice for resources around the cabinet table.

“I hope the three ministers will work together to ensure that barriers to investment in the sector be removed wherever possible to ensure that the significant revenue and jobs from the sector continue to flow,” he added.

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