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Former Kiwi Finance Minister to review SA's trade and investment strategy

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EXCLUSIVE | Premier Steven Marshall has appointed New Zealand’s former Finance Minister to review his government’s approach to international trade.

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InDaily can reveal that former New Zealand Finance Minister Steven Joyce has been appointed to review the State Government’s exports strategy.

Asked to confirm the appointment this morning, Marshall told InDaily Joyce would be tasked with reviewing the State Government’s trade and investment growth agenda, as well as the operations of the newly-established Department of Trade, Tourism and Investment.

He said Joyce – who retired from New Zealand’s Parliament earlier this year – had been responsible for the country’s economic growth agenda “for the best part of a decade” while the centre-right National Party was in government.

“What you find coming to government is there are many different departments and agencies tripping over themselves talking to the same stakeholder groups,” Marshall said.

“We think it’s time for a properly resourced review of the operations … basically designed to better deploy our resources to deliver the government’s growth agenda in terms of trade and investment.

“We want a far more consistent methodology, and we’re quite convinced this is a real coup to have someone with Mr Joyce’s experience to conduct that review.”

Marshall said the review would take a “whole-of-government” approach.

“We wanted an independent review of the operations of Trade, Tourism and Investment,” the Premier said.

“It’s also about the interface with PIRSA, the Premier’s Department, the France engagement strategy (and) the China desk.

“It will also include international students, population, Brand SA … all the aspects which, if you like, face the external world.”

Marshall the review “will ensure we have a whole-of-government approach to trade and investment so that we continue to grow the South Australian economy and capitalise on new and emerging export, trade and tourism opportunities”.

Earlier this year, Marshall brought in Wayne Eagleson, the chief of staff to former New Zealand Prime Ministers John Key and Bill English, to provide strategic advice on public sector reform and the transition to government after 16 years in Opposition.

Eagleson was commissioned for a fee of more than $90,000, for 30 days’ work over five months.

– with Tom Richardson

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