The Hon Gary Gray AO, MP was sworn in as the new Federal Tourism Minister at Canberra’s Parliament House on Monday 25 March.
Minister Gray replaces Martin Ferguson, who acknowledged the “tremendous achievements” made in the tourism portfolio. He thanked his “highly professional and respected” Department and the strong performance of Tourism Australia, its CEO and “business-focused Board”, in his resignation speech last Friday. In turn, the industry congratulated Mr Ferguson for his contributions as Federal Tourism Minister. “Minister Ferguson has made an enormous contribution to the Australian tourism industry over the past 5 years and the industry has benefited greatly from his focus, dedication and vision,” said ATEC Managing Director, Felicia Mariani.
ATEC Chairman, John King OAM, said Mr Ferguson would be sorely missed as a leading supporter of the tourism industry. “He will be particularly remembered for his passion and drive for the development of the important Chinese tourism market to Australia and for the greater involvement and employment of Indigenous people in tourism,” Mr King said. Minister Gray steps into Mr Ferguson’s former role after serving in a number of ministerial positions, including Special Minister for State and the Public Service, and the Parliamentary Secretary for Regional Development and Northern Australia. He also worked with Tourism Australia on events surrounding China Southern Airline’s inaugural flight to Perth. Minister Gray is the Member for the electorate of Brand, in the south west of Western Australia, where tourism is a key industry. Learn more about Minister Gray and the electorate of Brand.Minister Gray is to be assisted by Senator the Hon. Don Farrell, Senator for South Australia and former Parliamentary Secretary for Sustainability and Urban Water. Senator Farrell will also be Minister for Science and Research. Learn more about Senator Farrell.