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ABETZ, the Hon. EricBiography for ABETZ, the Hon. Eric

Senator for Tasmania

Liberal Party of Australia



Parliamentary Service

Chosen by the Parliament of Tasmania on 22.2.1994 under section 15 of the Constitution to represent that State in the Senate, vice B Archer (resigned). Re-elected 1998, 2004, 2010 and 2016. Defeated at general elections 2022.


Parliamentary Appointments

Member of the Parliamentary Retiring Allowances Trust from 1.8.2019 to 30.6.2022.


Ministerial Appointments

Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Defence from 21.10.1998 to 30.1.2001.

Special Minister of State from 30.1.2001 to 27.1.2006.

Minister for Fisheries, Forestry and Conservation from 27.1.2006 to 3.12.2007.

Minister for Employment from 18.9.2013 to 21.9.2015.

Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Public Service from 18.9.2013 to 21.9.2015.

Cabinet Minister from 18.9.2013 to 21.9.2015.


Committee Service

Joint Select: Republic Referendum served from 21.6.1999 to 9.8.1999; Government Procurement served from 1.12.2016 to 29.6.2017

Joint Standing: Electoral Matters served from 28.3.1995 to 3.9.1997; Treaties served from 31.5.1996 to 31.8.1998; Trade and Investment Growth served from 12.9.2016 to 1.7.2019; Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade served from 10.9.2018 to 30.6.2022

Joint Statutory: Native Title and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Land Fund served as Chair from 31.5.1996 to 4.6.1997; Native Title and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Land Fund served from 5.6.1997 to 8.2.2001; Law Enforcement served from 12.9.2016 to 1.7.2019; Public Accounts and Audit served from 15.2.2017 to 1.7.2019; Intelligence and Security served from 7.2.2018 to 30.6.2022

Senate Estimates: Estimates Group D served from 28.2.1994 to 12.5.1994; Estimates Group F served from 12.5.1994 to 9.10.1994

Senate Legislative and General Purpose Standing: Environment, Recreation and the Arts served from 1.3.1994 to 9.10.1994; Environment, Recreation, Communications and the Arts: References served from 10.10.1994 to 29.4.1996; Legal and Constitutional Affairs: Legislation served from 10.10.1994 to 17.10.1994; Legal and Constitutional Affairs: References served from 10.10.1994 to 9.11.1998; Legal and Constitutional Affairs: Legislation served as Substitute member from 30.5.1995 to 7.6.1995; Legal and Constitutional Affairs: Legislation served as Substitute member from 6.11.1995 to 6.11.1995; Legal and Constitutional Affairs: Legislation served from 8.5.1996 to 2.3.1997; Legal and Constitutional Affairs: Legislation served as Chair from 3.3.1997 to 9.11.1998; Employment, Education and Training: Legislation served as Substitute member from 1.10.1997 to 1.10.1997; Environment, Communications, Information Technology and the Arts: Legislation served as Substitute member from 17.2.1999 to 17.2.1999; Community Affairs: Legislation served as Substitute member from 24.5.1999 to 28.5.1999; Employment, Workplace Relations, Small Business and Education: Legislation served as Substitute member from 7.6.1999 to 9.6.1999; Economics: Legislation served as Substitute member from 17.6.2009 to 23.6.2009; Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade: Legislation served from 4.2.2016 to 9.5.2016; Environment and Communications: Legislation served from 4.2.2016 to 15.3.2016; Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade: Legislation served from 1.9.2016 to 13.2.2019; Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport: Legislation served from 1.9.2016 to 12.2.2018; Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade: References served from 10.9.2018 to 1.7.2019; Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade: Legislation served as Chair from 25.2.2019 to 30.6.2022; Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade: References served as Deputy Chair from 3.7.2019 to 30.6.2022

Senate Select: Unresolved Whistleblower Cases served from 1.12.1994 to 26.10.1995; Victorian Casino Inquiry served from 20.5.1996 to 5.12.1996; Scrutiny of Government Budget Measures served from 23.2.2016 to 15.3.2016; Establishment of a National Integrity Commission served from 29.2.2016 to 9.5.2016; Charity Fundraising in the 21st Century served from 27.6.2018 to 14.2.2019; Administration of Sports Grants served from 5.2.2020 to 18.3.2021

Senate Standing: Scrutiny of Delegated Legislation served from 24.2.1994 to 29.4.1996; Senators' Interests served from 24.3.1994 to 8.2.2001; Selection of Bills served from 20.3.2007 to 11.2.2008; Procedure served from 20.6.2007 to 11.2.2008; Procedure served from 3.2.2009 to 9.5.2016; Appropriations and Staffing served from 3.5.2010 to 11.11.2013; Appropriations, Staffing and Security served from 12.11.2013 to 21.9.2015; Privileges served from 4.2.2016 to 9.5.2016; Privileges served from 1.9.2016 to 1.7.2019; Senators' Interests served from 12.9.2016 to 28.11.2016; Privileges served as Deputy Chair from 4.7.2019 to 30.6.2022


Parliamentary Party Positions

Manager of Government Business in the Senate from 9.3.2007 to 17.10.2007.

Leader of the Government in the Senate from 18.9.2013 to 21.9.2015.

Deputy Leader of the Opposition in the Senate from 6.12.2007 to 3.5.2010.

Shadow Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research from 6.12.2007 to 8.12.2009.

Shadow Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations from 8.12.2009 to 18.9.2013.

Leader of the Opposition in the Senate from 3.5.2010 to 18.9.2013.


Party Positions

President of the Australian Liberal Students' Federation, 1978.

State President of the Liberal Party (Tas.) from 1990 to 1994.


Personal

Born 25.1.1958, Stuttgart, Germany

Widower


Qualifications and Occupations before entering Federal Parliament

BA (University of Tasmania).

LLB (University of Tasmania).

Barrister and solicitor.