18/10/2013 - 11:07

Shorten names new Labor team

18/10/2013 - 11:07

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Labor leader Bill Shorten has named his opposition ministry, with WA MPs Gary Gray and Melissa Parke awarded the resources and assistant health portfolios respectively.

Labor leader Bill Shorten has named his opposition ministry, with WA MPs Gary Gray and Melissa Parke awarded the resources and assistant health portfolios respectively.

Mr Gray has lost his small business and tourism portfolios but will retain resources and assume the title of shadow special minister for state and shadow minister for northern Australia.

Fremantle MP Melissa Parke, who briefly served as minister for international development under the second Rudd government, will serve as shadow assistant minister for health.

WA Senator Louise Pratt will meanwhile serve as a parliamentary secretary for environment, climate change and water.

Mr Shorten will take responsibility for the science and small businesss portfolios, while his deputy, Tanya Plibersek, will take on Julie Bishop in the foreign affairs portfolio.

Former foreign affairs minister Bob Carr is widely expected to retire, creating a Senate vacancy.

Chris Bowen retains his treasury responsibilities with economist Andrew Leigh promoted to shadow assistant treasurer.

In other shakeups, Penny Wong will take on shadow trade and investment ministries while Tony Burke will assume Ms Wong's finance responsibilities.

Brendan O'Connor will take on the government in the workplace relations portfolio while Richard Marles takes on the critical immigration and border protection portfolio.

Former prime minister Kevin Rudd, who led Labor to a resounding defeat at the September election, will not serve in a shadow ministerial position and it remains unclear whether he will serve out his term as an MP.

Stephen Conroy, who refused to serve under Mr Rudd's leadership, will take on the shadow defence portfolio but fellow Rudd defector Wayne Swan will remain on the backbench.

Others, including Stephen Smith, Craig Emerson, Peter Garrett and Greg Combet, chose not to contest the federal election.

Australian Mines and Metals Association chief executive Steve Knott said he was pleased to see Mr Gray retain responsibility for resources but warned that his leadership in the area should not be undercut in other policy areas.

He also welcomed the appointment of Mr Marles as shadow immigration minister, describing him as well known and highly respected by AMMA and the wider business community.

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