14 November 2014
Transcript - #2014039, 2014

Interview with Ben Davis, 4BC Drive

DAVIS:

My co-pilot this afternoon is the G20 guru, Dr Susan Harris-Rimmer, she is from the Australian National University. Also being kindly joined now by Steve Ciobo, who is Joe Honky's right hand man, he's the Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasurer. He's also the Federal Member from Moncrieff, down on the Gold Coast. Thank you very much for joining us here, you've been playing a host of roles over the last 24 hours at the global café last night, you were standing in for the Prime Minister, at least being the federal head and addressing the international minds that were there at the global café.

CIOBO:

Well thank you Ben, and mate it's a pleasure to be here sitting in your office, and it's not a bad office for a Friday. If the listeners could only see what we can, it's a magic view. The global café last evening it was a great dinner and I commend Cr Graham Quirk for the initiative in putting that together. It was executed beautifully by Brisbane Marketing. Really from a G20 perspective, I think it encapsulated, taking it beyond just being the Leaders Summit, and actually a bit of out reach to the various groups, and bodies that were represented there. I have to say the dinner went very well, and from all the reports I've heard back I think they considered it a good success.

DAVIS:

Just seen a tweet here, "The boss has arrived, wheels down at Brisbane airport." The British Prime Minister David Cameron of course, has hitched a ride with our Prime Minster Tony Abbott, he's on the ground. That's where you've been today haven't you, out at the international airport meeting, greeting all of the dignitaries coming in?

CIOBO:

Absolutely. We've had a number of them arrive today. We've had leaders from Mexico, Korea, a variety of countries, but there's also some international organisations that have arrived today. Jim Kim, who is the President of the World Bank arrived this morning. We had the head of the World Trade Organisation arrive as well. So, we've got a good cross section of different leaders, different finance ministers, and different international organisations and when they arrive at the airport it's nice to offer a friendly face and say, "g'day, welcome to Australia."

DAVIS:

I was gonna ask you, is that what you say, do you say good day to them or is it very strict protocol?

CIOBO:

My exact words mate, "G'day, welcome to Australia."

DAVIS:

Outstanding! That's what we want to hear.

CIOBO:

I think that's what they're expecting.

DAVIS:

Do you get any g'days back?

CIOBO:

No, but I mean I've gotta say the bulk of them... Jim Kim for example, great guy, he's the president of the World Bank, I noticed he was wearing RM Williams-

DAVIS:

Oh really?

CIOBO:

Yeah, and he was saying wearing the RMs, he bought a pair in Cairns some time ago, and he said he's been wearing them ever since, and he's now got three or four pairs.

He was in a meeting with Tony Blair in London, and Tony Blair happened to glance down and see he had his RMs on and he said to him, "ah, you've got the RMs."

RIMMER:

That's on the trade agenda right there.

CIOBO:

Correct.

DAVIS:

That leads us into my next question, because Susan was telling us before the 4 o'clock news and it mentioned something about the Kardashian Koala. Susan can you tell us about the Kardashian Koala, what is it?

RIMMER:

Well Mr Hockey did a walkthrough through the international media centre, and they've got folk from Australian Zoo in front of a fake Queensland, and they have Koalas, one of which was the Kim Kardashian snuggled Koala, apparently, and that's the one Joe Hockey had and he tweeted, this the same the same Koala that Kim Kardashian hugged.

DAVIS:

Have you been down there Steve? Have you been down the media centre?

CIOBO:

I was with the Treasurer when we did the walkthrough yesterday, we spent about an hour and a half walking through saying g'day. There's an army of volunteers, of paid personnel, people from all over Australia who are all here, to make this weekend an outstanding success, and we just wanted to make sure we had a chance to say a big thank you for all the work they're doing for the lead up to. I was there when he got photographed with the koala and I'll leave it up to the public as to who was more cute. I've got to say that he's my boss. I'm obliged.

DAVIS:

Did you get to cuddle the cute koala?

CIOBO:

No, just the Treasurer.

DAVIS:

Yeah, right okay. Special guest this afternoon is Steve Ciobo, he's the Federal Member of Moncrieff down on the Gold Coast. He's also the Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasurer, to the boss, to Joe Hockey. My co-pilot is G20 guru Dr Susan Harris-Rimmer. We are broadcasting live from the Griffith University South Bank campus for G20. It all kicks off tomorrow, the leaders will sit down, they will have their chats. When it comes to this summit, the main agenda, it's your bread and butter. It's economic growth and job creation.

CIOBO:

Exactly. It's jobs and growth, and we wanted to make sure at the commencement of this year, that G20 didn't just be a talkfest. We actually wanted to make sure we achieve some real milestones and obtain some goals, and actually delivered some real outcomes. So, we had a very loft aspiration, the Treasurer spearheaded this back in Sydney in February of this year. He got G20 member stakes to agree to an aspiration to boost global growth by 2 percent over the next five years. There was some push back against that, there were some countries who said no no, we don't believe in doing that. We don't think we can achieve that, but through consensus, they agreed upon it, and over the last eight or nine months, countries have been putting forward different proposals of reform for them to undertake in their own respective countries, about how they can achieve that additional global growth. We've had about 1000 new reforms that have been put forward, and I-

DAVIS:

1000?

CIOBO:

1000, and the IMF, the International Monetary Fund-

DAVIS:

How many of those will be adopted?

CIOBO:

-and the OECD world, well this... I'll get to that. The OECD they've modelled up those reforms and expect that it will add 2.1 percent onto global growth over the next 5 years.

Now you asked a pertinent question about, how do those get adopted. Well this is where the rubber hits the road, because this is where we need to make sure that... It's one thing to say this is what we're going to do, and then a whole separate thing to actually deliver it. So we've got to make sure we put in place monitoring by the IMF and OECD, to make sure that countries are undertaking the reforms that they said they would.

DAVIS:

I want to bring Susan in. Women are so important to the G20, can you explain why?

RIMMER:

I'm going to be holding my breath and crossing my fingers waiting the communiqué to be released publicly on Sunday, to see if The Australian is right, and there is a gender target in there to reduce the gap between female and male labour participation, and that was one of the reforms that the IMF and OECD have been looking at, because it really delivers a lot of economic growth.

DAVIS:

Not just here in Australia, around the world.

RIMMER:

This is around the world, and it's going to be challenging for some countries more than others, India and Saudi in particular. But it's something that Japan's already trying to achieve, it's something that Korea's trying to achieve. It's Christine Lagarde's policy. So we'll see what happens with that, but I think the targets are really important even though I know, in the academic community there's debates back and forth, but if you don't meet the target you learn why, you didn't meet the target and the learning is as important as the meeting. The global economy is not a precise science, in how it's gonna shift and tilt. The importance is the learning and the coordination between nations, and I've really seen some really good practice come out of the debates that the countries have had this evening.

DAVIS:

16 minutes past 4, we're gonna get a check of the cricket in just a moment to see what's happening at the Wacca. Steve before we let you go, when will we know the outcomes, and when will we be able to see something tangible out of these, and if it's working and reforms?

CIOBO:

There's really two answers. Sunday afternoon is the official post-summit media conference that the Prime Minister will undertake, and there will be opportunity there to find out exactly what was agreed upon this weekend, but in no way, shape or form should we lose sight of the fact that there's actually been a lot of work that's been achieved over the last eight or nine months. A series of announcements from Sydney, Cairns, two Washington meetings, all of this is driving the growth we've been looking for-

DAVIS:

What does this actually mean?

CIOBO:

Sure, someone sitting in there car going, it's all well and good, we've got all these people, all these police, what does it actually mean? What we're trying to achieve here is an additional $2 trillion into the global economy and literally tens of millions of jobs. When someone says to me, what does this mean for me? What it means is that we continue actually to increase total global growth, and the fact is that it doesn't matter what industry you're in. If we can grow the planet in terms of economy, if we can create tens of millions of additional jobs over the next gibe years, that is good for everybody. That ultimately is what this is all about.

DAVIS:

Well all right. The proof will be in the pudding. We'll wait for that communiqué on Sunday, and see how it does filter down to us. Steve, Susan, thank you so much for taking a detour out of your way today, and being with us this afternoon.