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Index > Australia > Federal Government > former Federal Resources Minister Martin Fergusson

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Former Federal Resources Minister Martin Ferguson

Since resigning as Minister for Resources, Martin Ferguson on 22 March 2013 and not seeking re-election at the September 2013 elections, he has taken the following paid positions:

Sept 2013: Group executive of natural resources for Seven Group Holdings which owns WesTrac, the WA/NSW/ACT Caterpillar dealer. Mr Ferguson told the Australian Financial Review his "skills and contacts" as a former resources minister would be a major advantage for Seven Group.
"What I will be looking for is to develop the mining sector with Seven Group," he said. A new New South Wales Operational Headquarters in Tomago, near Newcastle was opened in 2012.

September 28 2013: Chairman of the advisory board of the gas and oil industry's peak body, the Australian Petroleum Production & Exploration Association. APPEA's website acknowledges its status as a lobby group, saying it "works with Australian governments to help promote the development of the nation's oil and gas resources in a manner that maximises the return to the Australian industry and community".

21 October 2013: Martin Ferguson joined the Energy and Minerals Board of The University of Western Australia's Energy and Minerals Institute.
UWA said "the incoming board members were a trusted group of industry and government representatives who had worked with UWA for many years, and shared the University's vision of WA as an international centre of excellence in resources and energy research."
"It is a privilege to have Martin Ferguson share his many years of parliamentary expertise with our Board and I look forward to developing our relationship further as we guide the Energy and Minerals Institute to achieve our objectives of leading research, contributing to global knowledge and meeting the needs of local, national and international communities," Professor Johnson said.

March 18, 2014 Martin Ferguson joins University College London’s Australian board as chairman
“UCL is one of the world’s top five universities and its research in Australia is focused squarely in the minerals, energy and natural resources areas,’’ Ferguson said.
“I think Australia in general, and South Australia in particular, can better exploit UCL’s international connections and this is an area I’m keen to direct the board’s effort towards.”
“We have been patiently laying a foundation of research activity in the past two years, in areas including unconventional gas, adding value to Australian resources and resource monitoring (particularly offshore petroleum) but understand we need to now raise our profile and attract more PhD students to take ourselves to the next level," said UCL’s Australian campus chief executive David Travers.
“This has been evidenced in recent months with Mr Ferguson joining BG (British Gas) as a non-executive director and drawing praise from the Prime Minister about his thinking on improving resource sector productivity,’’ Mr Travers said.

 13 December 2013 BG Group appointed Martin Ferguson as Non-Executive Director on its international board.
BG Group owns QGC which operates in the Queensland gas fields.
BG Group Chairman Andrew Gould said "Martin also brings with him international expertise, particularly in the resources and energy sector. With Australia poised to become one of the world's leading suppliers of LNG, and with BG Group set to deliver the world's first coal seam gas to LNG project in 2014, Martin's insight and experience in the development of Australia's natural gas industry and the growing LNG market in Asia will prove invaluable to the board."

Last October, the Greens called him out with claims that Martin Ferguson has breached the Ministerial Code of Conduct ... ABC Fact Check called it In The Ballpark ... his appointment to the board at BG Group was made since then and was also within the 18 months stipulated by the Code.


Commonwealth parliament

Ministerial code of conduct - Post-separation employment

The Standards of Ministerial Ethics states:

2.19. Ministers are required to undertake that, for an eighteen month period after ceasing to be a Minister, they will not lobby, advocate or have business meetings with members of the government, parliament, public service or defence force on any matters on which they have had official dealings as Minister in their last eighteen months in office. Ministers are also required to undertake that, on leaving office, they will not take personal advantage of information to which they have had access as a Minister, where that information is not generally available to the public.

2.20. Ministers shall ensure that their personal conduct is consistent with the dignity, reputation and integrity of the Parliament.

The standards include a specific reference to restrictions on the post-separation employment of ministers who intend to engage in lobbying activities:

8.6. In addition, as outlined earlier, Ministers will undertake that for an eighteen month period after ceasing to be a Minister, they will not lobby, advocate or have business meetings with members of the government, parliament, public service or defence force on any matters on which they have had official dealings as Minister in their last eighteen months of office.

These restrictions are repeated in the Lobbying Code of Conduct (see here for more information on this code).


Martin Ferguson

Mr Ferguson was Australia's Federal Minister for Resources and Energy for nearly six years until his retirement from politics in early 2013. During that time, he was also the Federal Minister for Tourism.

He was elected to the Australian House of Representatives in 1996 as the Australian Labor Party's Member for Batman, a Melbourne-based electorate. He was responsible for several portfolios while in opposition until 2007, including transport, employment, training, multi-cultural affairs, regional development, infrastructure, roads and primary industries.

He was President of the Australian Council of Trade Unions for six years until entering parliament and is a life member of Australia's Liquor, Hospitality and Miscellaneous Workers' Union.

Mr Ferguson chairs a Tasmanian Government advisory panel into the state's timber industry; is chair of an advisory board to the Australian oil and gas industry association, APPEA; and is an executive with the Seven Group Holdings with responsibility for natural resources.

The editors of advise that this website is encouraging all political parties to contribute, especially if their policies place the health, well-being and rights of citizens ahead of mining profits.


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