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Monday, 15 June 2009
Page: 3255


Senator Ronaldson asked the Minister representing the Minister for Foreign Affairs and the Minister for Trade, upon notice, on 25 November 2008:

Has the Minister or any associated Parliamentary Secretary travelled overseas on parliamentary or ministerial business since 25 November 2007; if so, for each trip:

(1)   What was the purpose.

(2)   How many nights were spent overseas.

(3)   What were the dates and venues.

(4)   How many meetings did the Minister or Parliamentary Secretary attend.

(5)   How many departmental and/or personal ministerial staff accompanied the Minister or Parliamentary Secretary.

(6)   What was the aggregate cost.

(7)   Can an itemised account be provided of the costs for the following: (a) transportation; (b) travel allowance; (c) accommodation; (d) meals; and (e) other expenses, paid for by the Commonwealth in relation to the Minister, Parliamentary Secretary and their staff.


Senator Faulkner (Special Minister of State and Cabinet Secretary) —The Minister for Foreign Affairs and the Minister for Trade have provided the following answer to the honourable senator’s question:

Notes:

In relation to those parts of the question that request information on the cost of overseas travel by Ministers, Parliamentary Secretaries, their spouses and personal staff, please refer to the report Parliamentarians’ travel costs paid for by the Department of Finance and Deregulation (DoFD), which is tabled biannually giving details of dates, purpose of travel, countries of destination and costs of visits. Further information on ministerial visits is also available on ministerial web sites, in media releases and media reports.

For information concerning parts (1) and 7(b), (c) and (d), please refer to the report Parliamentarians’ travel costs paid for by the Department of Finance and Deregulation.

For official overseas travel by Minister Smith and Minister Crean to Indonesia in December 2007, please refer to the response to Senate Questions on Notice 87 and 88 (tabled on 15 May 2008).

For official overseas travel by Minister Smith, Parliamentary Secretary Kerr and Parliamentary Secretary McMullan between 24 November 2007 and 27 May 2008, please refer to the response to Senate Budget Estimates Question in Writing 41 (lodged on 5 September 2008).

For travel by Minister Smith, Mr Crean, Mr McMullan and Mr Kerr during July and August 2008, please see the response to Senate Questions on Notice 694 and 695.

For other official travel by Minister Smith completed before 28 September 2008, please see the response to Senate Question on Notice 751.

The following response covers other official overseas visits completed by 25 November 2008, for relevant portfolio ministers and parliamentary secretaries, not covered by the responses to previous questions as referred to above. All costs are as at 8 January 2009.

For part (3), transit cities are not included.

For part (4), “meetings” do not include the following activities:

- Meetings with ministerial, departmental or agency staff (e.g. post briefing sessions)

- Media events

- Commemorative activities (e.g. wreath laying ceremonies)

Breakfasts/lunches/dinners may be included for the purpose of “meetings” if an external guest was in attendance.

For part (5), the response covers ministerial staff and departmental staff from Canberra (which includes DFAT and/or portfolio agencies).

For part (7), with regard to “other expenses”, significant costs incurred have been provided. They include the cost of temporary offices, portfolio-related hospitality, equipment hire/purchase and other associated costs. To calculate all costs would represent an unreasonable diversion of resources.

Mr Smith - Minister for Foreign Affairs

Visit to the Philippines

(2)   Number of nights spent overseas: 2

(3)   Mr Smith visited Manila from 8 to 10 October 2008.

(4)   Meetings attended: 11

(5)   Mr Smith was accompanied by two ministerial staff and four departmental staff.

(6)   Aggregate cost of accompanying departmental staff: $30,146

(7) (a)   Transportation: $1,316. (e) Other expenses: $6,162 Visit to Cyprus, Israel, Palestinian Territories and France

(2)   Number of nights spent overseas: 5

(3)   Mr Smith visited the following: Larnaca: 27 October, Nicosia: 27 October, Tel Aviv: 27 October, Jerusalem: 28 October, Ramallah: 28 October, Paris: 28 - 30 October, Villers-Bretonneux (France): 30 October, Lamotte-Warfusee (France): 30 October

(4)   Meetings attended: 17

(5)   Mr Smith was accompanied by two ministerial staff and two departmental staff.

(6)   Aggregate cost of accompanying departmental staff: $50,037

(7) (a)   Transportation: $798. (e) Other expenses: $13,312 Visit to Mexico and Peru

(2)   Number of nights spent overseas: 6

(3)   Mr Smith visited the following: Mexico City: 17 - 18 November, Lima: 18 - 20 November

(4)   Meetings attended: 25

(5)   Mr Smith was accompanied by one ministerial staff member and one departmental staff member.

(6)   Aggregate cost of accompanying departmental staff: $37,209

(7) (a)   Transportation: $13. (e) Other expenses: $4,713 Mr Crean - Minister for Trade Visit to India, Japan, Switzerland, Belgium and USA

(2)   Number of nights spent overseas: 19

(3)   Mr Crean visited the following: Mumbai: 15 - 16 January, New Delhi: 16 - 19 January, Tokyo: 20 - 24 January, Davos: 25 - 27 January, Geneva: 27 - 29 January, Brussels: 29 - 30 January, Washington: 30 January - 1 February

(4)   Meetings attended: 72

(5)   Mr Crean was accompanied by one ministerial staff member and two departmental staff.

(6)   Aggregate cost of accompanying departmental staff: $51,631

(7) (a)   Transportation: $1,710. (e) Other expenses: $75,033 Visit to China

(2)   Number of nights spent overseas: 4

(3)   Mr Crean visited the following: Beijing: 15 - 16 April, Shanghai: 17 - 18 April

(4)   Meetings attended: 10

(5)   Mr Crean was accompanied by one ministerial staff member and three departmental staff.

(6)   Aggregate cost of accompanying departmental staff: $31,755

(7) (a)   Transportation: $273. (e) Other expenses: $2,689 Visit to PNG

(2)   Number of nights spent overseas: 3

(3)   Mr Crean visited the following: Madang: 22 - 23 April, Mora: 24 April, Hides: 24 April, Port Moresby: 24 - 25 April

(4)   Meetings attended: 8

(5)   Mr Crean was accompanied by one ministerial staff member and four departmental staff.

(6)   Aggregate cost of accompanying departmental staff: $15,993

(7) (a)   Transportation: $3,495. (e) Other expenses: $17,343

Note: Mr Crean was part of a delegation (Mr Smith, Mr Crean, Mr McMullan and Mr Kerr) attending the PNG - Australia Ministerial Forum. The costs incurred in (6) and (7) were for the entire delegation and it is not possible to disaggregate the costs among different portfolio ministers and parliamentary secretaries.

   Visit to Indonesia

   (2)   Number of nights spent overseas: 2

   (3)   Mr Crean visited Bali from 2 to 4 May 2008.

   (4)   Meetings attended: 11

   (5)   Mr Crean was accompanied by one ministerial staff member and four departmental staff.

   (6)   Aggregate cost of accompanying departmental staff: $16,376

   (7)   (a) Transportation: $348. (e) Other expenses: $7,127

   Visit to Peru, US and France

   (2)   Number of nights spent overseas: 13

   (3)   Mr Crean visited the following:

   Arequipa: 30 May - 1 June, New York: 2 June, Paris: 3 - 9 June, the Somme (France): 8 June

   (4)   Meetings attended: 28

   (5)   Mr Crean was accompanied by two ministerial staff. Four departmental staff accompanied Mr Crean on different legs of the visit.

   (6)   Aggregate cost of accompanying departmental staff: $61,526

   (7)   (a) Transportation: $894. (e) Other expenses: $12,378

   Visit to New Zealand

   (2)   Number of nights spent overseas: 1

   (3)   Mr Crean visited Wellington from 13 to 14 June 2008.

   (4)   Meetings attended: 6

   (5)   Mr Crean was accompanied by one ministerial staff member and two departmental staff.

   (6)   Aggregate cost of accompanying departmental staff: $6,426

   (7)   (a) Transportation: $143. (e) Other expenses: $578

   Visit to Malaysia, Philippines and Singapore

   (2)   Number of nights spent overseas: 6

   (3)   Mr Crean visited the following:

   Singapore: 5 - 6 October, Nusajaya/ Iskandar Development Region (Malaysia): 6 October, Kuala Lumpur: 6 - 8 October, Manila: 8 - 10 October, Masbate: 10 October

   (4)   Meetings attended: 23

   (5)   Mr Crean was accompanied by two ministerial staff and two departmental staff.

   (6)   Aggregate cost of accompanying departmental staff: $16,572

   (7)   (a) Transportation: $1,699. (e) Other expenses: $16,565

   Visit to Belgium, Russia, Saudi Arabia, UAE and Switzerland

   (2)   Number of nights spent overseas: 11

   (3)   Mr Crean visited the following:

   Antwerp: 28 October, Brussels: 28 - 29 October, Moscow: 29 October - 31 October, St Petersburg: 31 October - 1 November, Riyadh: 2 - 3 November, Dubai: 3 - 4 November, Geneva: 4 - 5 November

   (4)   Meetings attended: 32

   (5)   Mr Crean was accompanied by two ministerial staff and three departmental staff, each for part of the visit only.

   (6)   Aggregate cost of accompanying departmental staff: $57,757

   (7)   (a) Transportation: $165

   (e) Other expenses: $13,834

   Visit to Peru

   (2)   Number of nights spent overseas: 6

   (3)   Mr Crean visited Lima from 17 to 21 November.

   (4)   Meetings attended: 24

   (5)   Mr Crean was accompanied by two ministerial staff. Five departmental officers travelled to Lima from Canberra to support both Mr Smith’s and Mr Crean’s participation in the APEC Ministerial Meeting and associated bilateral programs.

   (6)   Aggregate cost of accompanying departmental staff: $86,755

   (7)   (a) Transportation: Nil. (e) Other expenses: $315

   Mr McMullan - Parliamentary Secretary for International Development Assistance

   Visit to Vanuatu

   (2)   Number of nights spent overseas: 2

   (3)   Mr McMullan visited Port Vila from 11 to 13 June 2008.

   (4)   Meetings attended: 11

   (5)   Mr McMullan was accompanied by one ministerial staff member and one departmental staff member.

   (6)   Aggregate cost of accompanying departmental staff: $2,932

   (7)   (a) Transportation: Nil. (e) Other expenses: $58

   Visit to France and Switzerland

   (2)   Number of nights spent overseas: 6

   (3)   Mr McMullan visited the following:

   Ste Maxime (France): 22 - 24 June, Geneva: 24 - 25 June

   (4)   Meetings attended: 16

   (5)   Mr McMullan was accompanied by one ministerial staff member.

   (6)   Aggregate cost of accompanying departmental staff: Nil

   (7)   (a) Transportation: $971. (e) Other expenses: $5,555

   Visit to South Africa, Kenya and Ghana

   (2)   Number of nights spent overseas: 9

   (3)   Mr McMullan visited the following:

   Johannesburg 30 August - 1 September, Pretoria 1 - 2 September, Nairobi 2 - 3 September, Accra 3 - 5 September

   (4)   Meetings attended: 39

   (5)   Mr McMullan was accompanied by one ministerial staff member and two departmental staff.

   (6)   Aggregate cost of accompanying departmental staff: $34,373

   (7)   (a) Transportation: $1,344. (e) Other expenses: $8,220

   Visit to Belgium

   (2)   Number of nights spent overseas: 4

   (3)   Mr McMullan visited Brussels from 14 to 16 September

   (4)   Meetings attended: 7

   (5)   Mr McMullan was accompanied by one ministerial staff member and one departmental staff member.

   (6)   Aggregate cost of accompanying departmental staff: $12,936

   (7)   (a) Transportation: $40. (e) Other expenses: $1,215

   Visit to PNG

   (2)   Number of nights spent overseas: 4

   (3)   Mr McMullan visited the following:

   Port Moresby: 2 and 5 September, Kokopo 3 - 5 September, Palmalmal: 4 September

   (4)   Meetings attended: 17

   (5)   Mr McMullan was accompanied by one ministerial staff member and two departmental staff.

   (6)   Aggregate cost of accompanying departmental staff: $10,260

   (7)   (a) Transportation: $1,500. (e) Other expenses: $1,895

   Mr Kerr - Parliamentary Secretary for Pacific Island Affairs

   Visit to Samoa and New Zealand

   (2)   Number of nights spent overseas: 6

   (3)   Mr Kerr visited the following:

   Apia: 8 - 12 June, Wellington: 13 - 14 June

   (4)   Meetings attended: 22

   (5)   Mr Kerr was accompanied by one ministerial staff member.

   (6)   Aggregate cost of accompanying departmental staff: Nil

   (7)   (a) Transportation: $362. (e) Other expenses: $1,271

   Visit to China

   (2)   Number of nights spent overseas: 5

   (3)   Mr Kerr visited Xiamen from 6 to 10 September.

   (4)   Meetings attended: 15

   (5)   Mr Kerr was accompanied by one ministerial staff member.

   (6)   Aggregate cost of accompanying departmental staff: Nil

   (7)   (a) Transportation: $47. (e) Other expenses: $124

   Visit to New Caledonia

   (2)   Number of nights spent overseas: 4

   (3)   Mr Kerr visited the following:

   Noumea: 11-15 November, Mt Dore: 12 November, St Louis: 12 November, Kone (Northern Province): 12 November, Vavouto: 12 November, Goro: 14 November

   (4)   Meetings attended: 17

   (5)   Mr Kerr was accompanied by one ministerial staff member and one departmental staff member.

   (6)   Aggregate cost of accompanying departmental staff: $4,743

   (7)   (a) Transportation: $576. (e) Other expenses: $12,810

   Mr Murphy - Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Trade

   Visit to Chile, Brazil, Argentina and Ghana

   (2)   Number of nights spent overseas: 12

   (3)   Mr Murphy visited the following:

   Santiago: 13 - 16 April, Sao Paulo: 16 - 17 April, Buenos Aires: 17 - 18 April, Accra: 19 - 23 April

   (4)   Meetings attended: 42

   (5)   Mr Murphy was accompanied by two departmental staff members.

   (6)   Aggregate cost of accompanying departmental staff: $25,474

   (7)   (a) Transportation: Nil. (e) Other expenses: $4,198

   Visit to Japan

   (2)   Number of nights spent overseas: 4

   (3)   Mr Murphy visited Yokohama from 27 to 30 May 2008.

   (4)   Meetings attended: 25

   (5)   Mr Murphy was accompanied by one ministerial staff member.

   (6)   Aggregate cost of accompanying departmental staff: Nil

   (7)   (a) Transportation: $1,323. (e) Other expenses: $6,222