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New President for the Murray-Darling Basin Commission.

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AFFA03/354WT - 1 December 2003

New President for the Murray-Darling Basin Commission

The Right Hon Ian Sinclair AC has today commenced duties as President of the Murray-Darling Basin Commission.

Mr Sinclair has a strong rural background and had a long, distinguished parliamentary career. He replaces Dr Roy Green AO, whose term as President expired on 30 November 2003.

Mr Sinclair's appointment was announced on behalf of the members of the Murray-Darling Basin Ministerial Council by the Council Chair, the Australian Government Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, the Hon Warren Truss MP.

"Mr Sinclair is an outstanding candidate, with strong chairmanship skills and a capacity to successfully engage with and relate to key stakeholders in the Basin," Mr Truss said.

"He will bring valuable skills and qualities to the position, particularly in community engagement. These skills will help to guide Commission business, including progressing the First Step for the Living Murray initiative."

Mr Sinclair will be responsible for ensuring the decisions for a healthy River Murray are based upon well-informed scientific, economic and social analysis, on which the Basin community has been properly consulted.

Mr Sinclair's appointment is for five years.

Thanking the outgoing President, Mr Truss said Dr Green's dedication and effort were invaluable in managing a busy, forward looking Murray Darling Basin organisation.

"Dr Green helped develop the Commission as a partnership between governments and community interests. He presided over the Commission at a significant time in the history of the Murray-Darling Basin Initiative and oversaw the development of the Basin Salinity Management Strategy and the beginning of the Living Murray Initiative."

Further media inquiries:

Minister Truss' office: Tim Langmead - 02 6277 7520 or 0418 221 433 Murray-Darling Basin Commission: Lawrie Kirk - 02 6279 0107 or 0417 219 158