Greg Hunt becomes third different industry minister in under a year

Image: ABC News

Prime minister Malcolm Turnbull reshuffled his ministry yesterday, expanding cabinet to 23 and appointing Greg Hunt as industry minister, with Christopher Pyne moving to defence industry.

Pyne took over from Ian Macfarlane as industry minister following Malcolm Turnbull assuming the prime ministership last September.

Greg Hunt, who has spent nearly a decade in the environment portfolio, now has responsibility for industry, innovation and science. He will oversee the Turnbull government’s National Innovation and Science Agenda.

The Australian reports that Pyne will be overseeing $90 billion of naval defence projects, with most of this work done in Pyne’s home state of South Australia.

“The minister for defence industry will oversee the naval shipbuilding plan which will create 3600 new direct jobs and thousands more across the supply chain across Australia, said Turnbull.

Pyne, who described the defence industry as an economic and innovation driver, said, “It is no secret that I am a strong supporter of Australia’s ­defence industry and have worked hard to ensure our procurement dollars are spent here in Australia.”

“Australia is entering the single biggest period of defence construction in its history. I will manage this massive program.”

Other moves in the reshuffle include the Nationals’ Matt Canavan claiming resources, the Nationals’ Michael McCormack getting small business, and Josh Frydenberg gaining the super portfolio of energy and environment.