Wednesday 26 August 2020 / 10:55 AM Emily Thornberry

Emily Thornberry responds to reports of Tony Abbott’s British trade appointment

Emily Thornberry MP, Labour’s Shadow Secretary of State for International Trade, responding to the reports that former Australian Prime Minister, Tony Abbott, has been appointed to a senior role promoting British trade deals around the world, said:

“Any way you look at it, this is an absolutely staggering appointment. On a personal level, it is shameful that Boris Johnson thinks this offensive, aggressive, leering, gaffe-prone misogynist is the right person to represent our country overseas.

“And on a professional level, this is someone with no hands-on experience of negotiating trade agreements, who denies the climate change that we believe should be at the heart of our trade policy, and who clearly has no concept of the importance of Britain’s trade with the EU.

“He was ousted by his own colleagues after just two years in power, and rejected by his own constituents just last year. They are the people who know him best, and wanted rid of him, yet here we are now, hiring him to negotiate our trade deals around the world.

“It’s yet more breathtaking incompetence from a government that has turned it into an art-form.”