Wednesday, 24 July 2019
Questions without Notice
Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction
My question is again to Senator Birmingham. I refer to Minister Taylor's statement yesterday that he has 'no association with Jam Land Pty Ltd'. Does the minister stand by that statement?
Firstly, it was not my statement; it's not my statement to stand by. Secondly, I'll check the record in terms of whether or not that is a direct quote. What I would say is that Minister Taylor's indirect interest in Jam Land has been widely reported. It is also well-known that the minister's shareholding in Gufee Pty Ltd has been recorded on the minister's statement of interests. The fact that Gufee holds shares in Jam Land Pty Ltd is a matter that is on public records, such as those that Senator Wong tabled in the Senate. The declarations required by the House or the Senate are for declarations of direct interests, not indirect interests, and Minister Taylor has complied with those requirements.
In question time today, Minister Porter contradicted the assertion the Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction made in the House—that he had no association with Jam Land Pty Ltd—saying, 'There has never been any dispute that the minister has a relationship with the company.' Does the minister stand by that statement?
I draw the senator's attention to the declared interests that Minister Taylor made to the House in relation to Gufee Pty Ltd, which in turn holds shares in Jam Land Pty Ltd. The declaration was made in accordance with the rules of the House, according to the advice I've been provided.
Minister Taylor said a short time ago in the House that his interest in Jam Land was declared in accordance with the rules. Given that the ministerial declaration of interests and the register of interests in the House make no mention of Jam Land Pty Ltd, could the minister please refer us to where the minister actually declared that interest?
As I just explained to the Senate, the rules require that direct interests be declared. Minister Taylor, I understand, has declared his interests in Gufee Pty Ltd in accordance with the rules. Gufee Pty Ltd has shares in Jam Land Pty Ltd. Declarations were made in accordance with the rules that direct interests be declared. That is the case. Indeed, I'm sure there would be members and senators throughout the parliament who may have shareholdings in listed companies or others that have indirect interests in other companies. The point is: the rules require declaration where you have a direct interest. Minister Taylor made that declaration.