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Monday, 7 November 2016
Page: 2932


Ms HENDERSON (Corangamite) (15:09): My question is to the Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment. What contribution does the construction industry make to Australia's tourism industry? Is the minister aware of any threats to this contribution?

Mr CIOBO (MoncrieffMinister for Trade, Tourism and Investment) (15:09): I thank the member for Corangamite for her question, because I know the member for Corangamite has a deep passion for Australia's tourism industry. There are some 3,600 people in her electorate that are directly employed in Australia's tourism industry and, of course, an array of others that benefit from the construction industry and the tourism industry succeeding in her electorate. I note that international visitor arrivals into her electorate are growing faster than domestic arrivals, up to 45 per cent compared to 42 per cent. Spending by international tourists is up by some 74 per cent in the last three years, so the total tourism spending in Geelong now represents some $541 million. There can be no doubt that the member for Corangamite has led the charge with respect to the growth of the tourism industry but also the construction industry—a clear-eyed vision about the benefits that can flow from regional Australia for Australia's tourism industry.

I note, though, that she also asked a question in relation to threats to Australia and to our policy as a result of the contribution made by the construction and tourism industries. I have to say that it was revealing last week to see some of the commentary, and in particular a video that just demonstrates how beholden the Australian Labor Party is to Australia's trade union movement. We saw just last week senior CFMEU officials, including the national president, Joe McDonald, and a WA assistant state secretary, Graham Pallot, and what were they saying? They were happy to say on video that they will put in Labor members of parliament who will support the scrapping of the ABCC, and if they do not—if those opposite do not support the scrapping of the ABCC—what did they say on video? They will replace them. That is what they said, and that is the threat that hangs over the head of every Labor member opposite: the threat of being replaced.

Unfortunately, we see examples of that happening. Just up there on the back benches is the member for Wills. He was, of course, imposed by the AWU. With all due respect to the member for Wills, the locals did not want him representing them. No; they would rather have former senator and long-time local Mehmet Tillem. But what did the AWU do? They imposed someone from the other side of Melbourne, with no connections whatsoever to the electorate, and thrust him in—shoehorned him into the seat. Why? I am sure, when they say the time has come for him to walk away from the ABCC, he will, just like every other member opposite, who know that their preselection is dependent upon doing the bidding of their union masters.

Mr Gosling interjecting

The SPEAKER: The member for Solomon will leave under 94(a).

The member for Solomon then left the chamber.

Mr Turnbull: I ask that further questions be placed on the Notice Paper.