Save Search

Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
 Download Current HansardDownload Current Hansard    View Or Save XMLView/Save XML

Previous Fragment    Next Fragment
Tuesday, 13 May 2014
Page: 3508


Mr FEENEY (Batman) (12:27): The opposition supports the G20 (Safety and Security) Complementary Bill 2014. It is a bill which will create a new standalone Commonwealth act clarifying the interaction between provisions in the G20 (Safety and Security) Act 2013—that being a piece of Queensland legislation—and existing Commonwealth legislation at the Brisbane Airport during the G20 Summit in 2014 in Queensland.

As this place well understands, it was former Prime Minister Julia Gillard that secured for Australia the host nation status for the 2014 G20 Leaders Summit. That, of course, was secured by her at the 2011 G20 Leaders Summit held in Cannes.

The 2014 G20 Leaders Summit will be the most important event in the G20 year and will be held on 15 and 16 November in Brisbane. This will be the most significant meeting of world leaders that Australia has ever hosted, with as many as 4,000 delegates and 3,000 media representatives expected to attend.

The G20 is, without doubt, the premier forum for international cooperation on the most important of issues of the global economic and financial agenda. As set out on the G20 website, the objects of the G20 are threefold: firstly, policy coordination between its members in order to achieve global economic stability and sustainable growth; secondly, promoting financial regulations that reduce risks and prevent future financial crises; and thirdly, the modernising international financial architecture.

G20 members account for 85 per cent of the world economy, some 80 per cent of global trade and two-thirds of the world's population. The G20 represents all geographic regions of the world. Hosting a meeting of the significance of the G20 gives Australia a valuable opportunity to influence the economic policies of the major economies of the globe and contribute to a healthy, growing and resilient global economy. Achieving such outcomes will also boost Australian jobs, living standards and long-term prosperity. The G20 summit, of course, is an opportunity to showcase the very best of Australia.

Inevitably, this event will involve a complex security operation—perhaps not the Warsaw Pact versus NATO conflict that the previous speaker seemed to summon into being. Nonetheless, event organisers will need to ensure that appropriate security measures are in place to protect visitors, while minimising disruptions to inner city residents and businesses. As a consequence of Queensland hosting the G20 summit in 2014, the Queensland Police Service will take on the primary responsibility for providing security to G20 delegates and their official parties, security for meeting and accommodation venues, including motorcade routes, and security for other official events associated with the G20 meeting in Queensland. The G20 delegates will include internationally protected persons who require the very highest standards of personal security. In addition to the protection of delegates in G20 events, the Queensland Police Service is also responsible for protecting members of the public, as one would well imagine, together with businesses and property—those things being unrelated to the G20 summit—from any illegal activities that may be planned by persons opposed to the G20 meetings.

With these additional responsibilities falling on the Queensland Police Service for the safe conduct of the G20 meetings, the Queensland Newman LNP government determined it would be appropriate for an additional stand-alone act to be passed by the Queensland parliament granting specific powers to the Queensland Police Service for the G20 event. The powers are broadly similar to those provided for under the New South Wales APEC Meeting (Police Powers) Act 2007 and the Western Australian Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (Special Powers) Act 2011. I think it is worthy for this House to note that that legislation passed the Queensland parliament with the support of both the government and the opposition.

This bill we are considering will create a new stand-alone Commonwealth act clarifying the interaction between provisions found in the Queensland G20 (Safety and Security) Act 2013 and existing Commonwealth legislation at Brisbane Airport during the G20 summit in 2014 in Queensland. The Queensland act provides police officers and appointed persons with special powers for the purposes of the summit. Those powers supplement the powers available under the Queensland Police Powers and Responsibilities Act 2000 and are designed to ensure the security and safety of the G20 summit, events, delegates, members of the public, and public and private property. The powers are exercisable for a limited period and apply only with respect to certain specified locations, including Brisbane Airport, which is the important part for our purposes, because that is a Commonwealth place.

The G20 (Safety and Security) Complementary Bill 2014 provides mechanisms for dealing with any overlap between the provisions and the G20 (Safety and Security) Act 2013 and existing Commonwealth legislation in their application to the relevant parts, or part, of Brisbane Airport. This will ensure police officers and other authorised persons have a very clear understanding of the powers available to them at Brisbane Airport during the summit. The powers will be exercisable for a limited period and apply only with respect to those limited locations.

The bill would not directly provide for any additional powers; however, to avoid any inconsistency between Commonwealth aviation legislation and the Queensland legislation, the proposed section 8 provides certain provisions which ensure that those functions are able to be exercised with absolute clarity by the responsible authorities. This will prevent there being any concerns about powers being available under the Queensland act not being able to be exercised in Commonwealth places. One can readily appreciate what a nonsense it would be if a regime applying more generally in Brisbane was not able to be exercised in certain particular Commonwealth places.

Members of the AFP will have access to powers found in the Queensland legislation, as that act confers powers on 'non-State police officers', which includes members of the AFP and the police force of another state or New Zealand. This is legislation which is utterly practicable and which ensures that the Commonwealth and the powers and authorities of the Commonwealth are able to work effectively and with jurisdictional clarity with Queensland and the Queensland Police Service.

This is a piece of housekeeping legislation, but, again, let me make very plain the fact that this G20 event is something of enormous significance for this country. It is an opportunity, again, to congratulate former Prime Minister Julia Gillard for securing Australia as the host nation for this very significant event. This is an event that both government and opposition support and demonstrate great support and pride in Australia's hosting. On those bases, I commend the bill to the House.

Debate adjourned.