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The First Abbott Ministry Announced

The Prime Minister-elect, Tony Abbott, has announced the composition of his first ministry.

The new executive has 30 members. The Cabinet has 19 members, the Outer Ministry 11, and there are 12 Parliamentary Secretaries.

Announcing the ministry at a press conference in Canberra, Abbott said: “This is the team to provide strong and stable government. It builds on a strong, cohesive and united opposition.”


Stability and calm were Abbott’s themes during the announcement. He said he wanted a ministry that would “methodically and calmly implement our commitments and respond intelligently to the events of the day”.

Abbott said he had attempted to avoid the proliferation of grandiose titles. Most ministers now have brief titles such as “Minister for Education”.

Most members of the outer ministry are designated Assistant Ministers. “I’m determined to have clear lines of authority and a back-to-basics approach,” Abbott said.

The key figures in the ministry are largely unchanged from the days of opposition. They include Joe Hockey as Treasurer, Julie Bishop as Foreign Minister, Christopher Pyne in Education, Peter Dutton in Health, Malcolm Turnbull in Communications and George Brandis as Attorney-General.

The winners from the announcement are Mathias Cormann (Finance), Arthur Sinodinos (Assistant Treasurer), Jamie Briggs (Infrastructure), Michaelia Cash (Immigration) and Fiona Nash (Health).

Abbott has dropped six members of his shadow ministry: Senator Ian MacDonald, Teresa Gambaro, Andrew Southcott, Don Randall, John Cobb and Senator Concetta Fierravanti-Wells, who becomes a parliamentary secretary.

Andrew Robb has been moved sideways from Finance to become Minister for Trade and Investment. For the first time in living memory, the Nationals have lost the Trade portfolio.

Bronwyn Bishop will become Speaker of the House of Representatives.

The Father of the House, Philip Ruddock, who clocks up forty years in parliament on September 22, will be Chief Government Whip. Abbott said there will be 30 new coalition members. “I can think of no better person to act as tutor-in-chief,” Abbott said, describing Ruddock as a man of unrivalled experience, judgement, insight and character.

The former Whip, Warren Entsch, will chair a new committee for northern developemnt. “Warren is the embodiment of northern Australia,” said Abbott.

The ministry will be sworn in on Wednesday morning.

The Administrative Orders, the document that sets down detailed responsibilities of the ministry, including the Acts of Parliament they will administer, will be issued after the swearing-in.

The First Abbott Ministry


  1. Prime Minister – Tony Abbott
  2. Deputy Prime Minister, Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development, (Leader of the Nationals) – Warren Truss
  3. Minister for Foreign Affairs, (Deputy Leader of the Liberal Party) – Julie Bishop
  4. Minister for Employment, Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on the Public Service, (Leader of the Government in the Senate) – Senator Eric Abetz
  5. Attorney-General, Minister for the Arts, (Deputy Leader of the Government in the Senate), (Vice-President of the Executive Council) – Senator George Brandis
  6. Treasurer – Joe Hockey
  7. Minister for Agriculture, (Deputy Leader of the Nationals) – Barnaby Joyce
  8. Minister for Education, (Leader of the House) – Christopher Pyne
  9. Minister for Indigenous Affairs, (Leader of the Nationals in the Senate) – Senator Nigel Scullion
  10. Minister for Industry – Ian Macfarlane
  11. Minister for Social Services – Kevin Andrews
  12. Minister for Communications – Malcolm Turnbull
  13. Minister for Health, Minister for Sport – Peter Dutton
  14. Minister for Small Business – Bruce Billson
  15. Minister for Trade and Investment – Andrew Robb
  16. Minister for Defence – Senator David Johnston
  17. Minister for the Environment – Greg Hunt
  18. Minister for Immigration and Border Protection – Scott Morrison
  19. Minister for Finance – Senator Mathias Cormann


  1. Assistant Minister for Social Services, (Manager of Government Business in the Senate) – Senator Mitch Fifield
  2. Assistant Minister for Employment, (Deputy Leader of the House) – Luke Hartsuyker
  3. Assistant Minister for Health, (Deputy Leader of the Nationals in the Senate) – Senator Fiona Nash
  4. Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Centenary of ANZAC), Special Minister of State – Senator Michael Ronaldson
  5. Assistant Minister for Education – Sussan Ley
  6. Minister for Human Services – Senator Marise Payne
  7. Minister for Justice – Michael Keenan
  8. Assistant Minister for Defence – Stuart Robert
  9. Assistant Minister for Immigration and Border Protection, Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Women – Senator Michaelia Cash
  10. Assistant Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development – Jamie Briggs
  11. Assistant Treasurer – Senator Arthur Sinodinos AO


  1. Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Agriculture – Senator Richard Colbeck
  2. Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Industry – Bob Baldwin
  3. Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Foreign Affairs – Senator Brett Mason
  4. Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasurer – Steven Ciobo
  5. Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Social Services – Senator Concetta Fierravanti-Wells
  6. Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for the Environment – Senator Simon Birmingham
  7. Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Education – Senator Scott Ryan
  8. Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Defence – Darren Chester
  9. Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Communications – Paul Fletcher
  10. Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister – Josh Frydenberg
  11. Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister – Alan Tudge
  12. Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Finance – Michael McCormack

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