Over the course of the past week I have been taking leave with my family. Our leave was brought forward due to the need to cancel our scheduled leave in January because of our official government visit to India and Japan at the invitation of PMs Modi and Abe.

I express my sincere condolences and sympathies to the families of the firefighters who have so tragically been killed overnight.

They were bravely defending their communities with an unmatched spirit and a dedication that will forever set them apart amongst our most courageous Australians.

Their sacrifice and service saving lives and saving properties will be forever remembered. I wish those injured all the best in their recovery.

Indigenous Australians will take a stronger role in the economic development of Northern Australia under a new Accord launched at a Northern Australia Ministerial Forum in Katherine.

Ministers from the Commonwealth Government, the Northern Territory, Queensland and Western Australia launched a new Accord, agreed by the Northern Australia Strategic Partnership, that will provide a framework for parties to work together to advance Indigenous economic development in northern Australia.

The Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services and Multicultural Affairs, the Hon. David Coleman has requested and been provided with leave of absence for personal reasons.

Minister Coleman is an incredibly valued member of our team and has been doing an outstanding job. I look forward to him to returning to his Ministerial role when he is in a position to do so.

The Governor-General has accepted the Government’s recommendation to appoint Ms Rachel Noble PSM as the Director-General of the Australian Signals Directorate (ASD).

Ms Noble’s deep experience in intelligence strongly positions her to lead ASD in executing its important national security mission. 

Matthew Anderson PSM has been appointed as the next Director of the Australian War Memorial by the Government following a formal selection process.

Mr Anderson, a veteran himself, is the current Deputy High Commissioner to the United Kingdom.

He will replace outgoing Director, Dr Brendan Nelson AO, who will conclude in the role at the end of this year.

The Prime Minister said Mr Anderson’s skills, knowledge and experience will ensure the continued success of the Memorial.

I am pleased today to release the Independent Review of the Australian Public Service and the Government’s response.

Australia already has a world-class public service, however all organisations need to adapt and evolve to ensure they can be their best. The Australian Public Service is no different. Australians rely on the essential public services the APS delivers on behalf of the Government.

That is why the Government commissioned the Independent Review of the Australian Public Service in 2018.

PRIME MINISTER: Thank you everyone for joining us today. I’d like to deal firstly with the matters regarding the New Zealand volcano tragedy, as well as the national disaster, the fires that are occurring across the country.

The Government has today released its response and implementation roadmap to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s (ACCC) Digital Platforms Inquiry.

In December 2017, the Government directed the ACCC to inquire into the impact of digital search engines, social media platforms, and digital content aggregators on the state of competition in media and advertising services markets.  The Inquiry formed part of a package of reforms to modernise and update Australia’s media laws.

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