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Australia has been 'Robb-ed'

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For more information or a comment from Bob Katter please contact Ali Winters 0418 840 243

Australia has been ‘Robb-ed’

1 November 2016: KAP Member for Kennedy has today stated Australia has been ‘Robb-ed’ in response to the news that former Trade Minister Andrew Robb has become a ‘high-level economic consultant’ with the Chinese company that 99 year leased and now operates the Darwin Port - the Landbridge Group.

“I don’t know what it was like for other Australians, but for 2 weeks after I found out the only deep water general port in the Northern half of Australia had been sold to the Chinese - I could not think straight. It haunted me.

“That decision in the 1940s or 1950s - there was a name for that type of decision - and you could get shot for it.

“It could be that Australia gets Robb-ed, to make individuals personally rich. Whether this is true or not there is a case to be answered,” Mr Katter said.

The $506m, 99 year lease of the Port of Darwin sparked concerns at the highest levels of the Australian Defence Force when it was announced last year.

Reports from the United States called Australia’s lease to Landbridge as an ‘alarming naivety’ and led to US President Obama telling Australia ‘Let us know next time’.

With a degree of cynicism, Mr Katter points to other examples of post-political appointments - and Australia’s reliance on overseas oil producers instead of locally produced ethanol.

“People ask me why we would send $26B a year to the Middle East to buy oil when we can produce it here ourselves from 5% of the runoff of half a dozen northern rivers - by growing ethanol?

“The first Minister who made the decision for no ethanol, after politics went out and got a job with an oil/gas/coal mining company.

“The second Minister who made the decision later took up a major position with a mining/oil/coal company.

“The third Minister who made the decision, from the ALP, now heads up an oil/gas/coal company.

“Mr Macfarlane, the last minister who held the portfolio and refused to give us ethanol, has now been appointed as the Chief Executive of the Queensland Resources Council.

“So for a period of 20 years, you ask me why we live in a country that has to import all of its oil from overseas? $26B going overseas instead of into rural Australia.

“You ask me why when each of them left politics and went into what would appear a very high remuneration appointment with an oil/gas/coal company?

Mr Katter will be moving for a full-fledged inquiry into Mr Robb’s appointment on his return to Parliament next week.


Hon Bob Katter MP Federal Leader

It's the principle of it Member for Kennedy