CANBERRA, Sept 16 Australia's new conservative
Prime Minister Tony Abbott unveiled his first cabinet on Monday,
using the appointment of experienced lawmakers to promise a
stable government after three years of minority rule.
Abbott, who won power on a promise to focus on economic
management, made only minor changes to his opposition line-up,
with Joe Hockey appointed Treasurer, as expected, while Mathias
Cormann becomes Finance Minister, shifting from his assistant
Abbott's Deputy Liberal Party leader Julie Bishop will
become Foreign Minister, and will be the only woman in Abbott's
20-member cabinet, although several women were promoted to
"It is, I believe, one of the most experienced incoming
ministries in our history, and I think it's important to have
experience as you move from opposition to government," Abbott
said, in his first news conference since Sept. 7 elections.
Abbott will become Australia's third prime minister in three
months when he is sworn into power by the country's
governor-general on Wednesday. He won a commanding majority in
parliament on Sept. 7 on a platform to scrap taxes on carbon
pollution and iron ore and coal mine profits.
After the previous Labor government switched prime ministers
twice in three years, Abbott has promised a methodical
government with no surprises.
Abbott's first cabinet also shifted trade responsibility
from the minority National Party in his ruling coalition, which
has pushed for tighter rules on foreign investment in farms,
handing the job to veteran Liberal Party colleague Andrew Robb.