SUBJECTS: Visit to Bendigo; Bendigo Mall; climate change, AFL.
HOST: We’ve got Anthony Albanese the Leader of the Opposition. He’s on his way to Bendigo. Good morning, Anthony.
ANTHONY ALBANESE, LEADER OF THE AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY: G’day Kylie you’re my favourite.
HOST: Aw, listen to you,
HOST: Thank you Anthony
HOST: Don’t suck up to her now mate, you don’t even know her.
ALBANESE: She was much nicer than you were.
HOST: He gets all funny when we talk politics. Every time I bring politics up on the show, he’ll go. Get on with it, get on with it.
HOST: No, it’s not that…
ALBANESE: Well shouldn’t he go get a cup of tea or coffee or something?
HOST: Well I’m about to but what I’ll do is I’ll start you off with this question mate, you’re coming to Bendigo as the Opposition Leader, what the hell are you going to do here mate, because we need jobs, we need lots of things Anthony.
ALBANESE: Well what I’m doing is talking with Lisa Chesters and having a look at exactly that, jobs in Bendigo. We’re going to Keech 3D Advanced Manufacturers who employ about hundred and twenty people. So, it’s a great example of high value manufacturing in a regional centre with a growing company. I’m going to be taken around there and have a real look at what they’re doing and see if we can replicate how we can make them grow. And then we’re going to the Sydney Myer Haven which is a social housing, affordable housing project and we’re having a look there as well. Spending the day in beautiful Bendigo with Lisa.
HOST: Now, it’s been a while since you’ve been here. You weren’t the Leader of the Opposition back in 2013 so you’re going to notice a lot of changes Anthony.
ALBANESE: Yes indeed. One of the things I’ve noticed every time I’ve been to Bendigo is that it is a really successful city. It’s one in which jobs have been located there, they’re diverse jobs of course in the defence industry, in high value manufacturing and in social services as well. It’s a great city and one of the things that Victoria, I think, has done better than some of the other states is grow its regional cities with Bendigo, Ballarat and Geelong and I’m looking forward to the visit there today.
HOST: We are very proud of our beautiful city Bendigo but whilst you’re here do us a favour and walk…
HOST: Don’t go through the mail.
HOST: No, I was going to say, walk down the Mall. Have you heard about our Mall?
HOST: Well when you speak to Lisa Chesters just ask her about it and let’s just see whether Lisa can actually do something about it, because it is an issue and certainly put that on your agenda mate, with Lisa. No doubt she is probably listening right now, so she might do the same thing. Whilst it is a beautiful city you’re right, we have got a few issues. Jobs is one, the manufacturing industry is not great all around the state. I think it’s fair to say that, because everything seems to go overseas. So, will there be a plan for Bendigo at some stage with that because we need jobs.
ALBANESE: Oh absolutely. We want regional cities to grow. When I was Regional Development Minister I travelled regularly to Bendigo. We had the whole Regional Ministerial Conference there with Minister Allen, who of course is a proud Bendigo resident. We worked very hard to make the Bendigo of today, we funded the Regional Rail Link, we funded the tennis centre there, we funded roads up to Bendigo and I’ll be travelling on them in the next little on my way there.
HOST: Now I just need to ask, going off track here Anthony. Australia has been left out of the latest round of Climate Talks at the United Nations, which are happening right now, due to our refusal to give up on coal. We’ve got the leader of the country as we know still over in the US with Mr Trump. What do you think of that? Because I know climate change is close to your heart.
ALBANESE: Well, climate change is a serious issue. It’s an intergenerational issue it’s one where we have a responsibility to act not just for ourselves but for our kids and grandkids. So, I would have thought that the Prime Minister, he’s in the United States, I think he should be dropping in to New York. The UN Framework Convention on Climate Change Conferences are serious conferences, world leaders will be there, and Australia should participate because we’ve got a lot to lose in terms of our climate. We know that you can’t say that any single event is because of climate change but we know that we’re in drought at the moment, we know that extreme weather events are happening more often, they’re more intense. Australia needs to take action and we need the world to take action.
HOST: It’s a little embarrassing though isn’t it, don’t you think, that it is on, and he is close by and he’s not going?
ALBANESE: Well, he could just drop in, rather than do all the things that he’s doing. I’m sure that he could make time in his schedule, and frankly, I’m surprised that he’s not, given he’s very close to New York, he’s there all week, and other world leaders will be there. When I was the Climate Change spokesperson for the Labor Party, a long time ago, attended a couple of the conferences and they really are important. It seems to me there’s a contradiction too because one of the things that the Liberals sometimes say: Oh, we can’t act, we can’t get ahead too early because the whole world has to act. Well this is a conference of the world where we should be there encouraging action across both the developed world and the developing world.
HOST: Yep, we should be leading and not following. Good call. All right, Anthony Albanese is coming to Bendigo, the Opposition Leader, as we speak.
ALBANESE: See we became friends.
HOST: Nah mate, not you and I…. so, who do you barrack for in the footy mate?
ALBANESE: I’ve got to concede this, it’s a long story but I’m a Hawks fan.
HOST: Oh, they’re not bad, yeah, you got a point from Coggo for that.
HOST: Well my mate Laddo’s a premiership player there so I’ve got a soft spot for the Hawks.
HOST: And just quickly how’s your DJing going?
ALBANESE: I’ve done one as Leader. I did one as a fundraiser for the Community Cup in Sydney which raises money for RecLink. It began in Melbourne, raising money for an organisation that tries to get marginalised young people connected up with the mainstream through arts and sport.
HOST: Well next time you’re in town, we didn’t have enough time to organise it today but next time you’re in town please come in and do a DJ set for us. We’d love to have you on the radio Albo.
ALBANESE: Oh. I knew we were friends at the beginning of the interview Kylie but now we’re really good friends.
HOST: We’re besties mate.
HOST: Stop sucking up to her mate.
HOST: Anthony, we better let you go, enjoy your day here in Bendigo.
HOST: Drive close to the Hargreaves Mall Anthony Albanese and speak to Lisa Chesters and say can we do something with this? Please. That’s all I ask and you and I’ll be friends.
ALBANESE: I’ll pass it on.
HOST: Beautiful. Thanks Anthony.
ALBANESE: Done. See you later, have a great day.
HOST: Anthony Albanese, who is the Leader of the Opposition, live on Triple M. Back after this.
Leader of the Australian Labor Party, MP for Grayndler, Rabbitohs Life Member. Authorised by Anthony Albanese, ALP, Canberra.