Turnbull’s surprising new gig

Former Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has teamed up with one of Australia’s richest men and an ex-spy boss for a surprising new role.

Former Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has teamed up with Andrew “Twiggy” Forrest’s Fortescue Metals, to head a clean-energy drive at the iron ore giant.

Mr Turnbull has agreed to become chairman of Australian Fortescue Future Industries (FFI), a Fortescue subsidiary which scours the globe for clean-energy investment opportunities.

Mr Turnbull has been joined by former Australian Secret Intelligence Service (ASIS) director-general Nick Warner, who has signed on to become the FFI’s special advisor for international affairs.

Fortescue chairman Andrew Forrest said he was “proud” to announce Mr Turnbull’s appointment, saying he would “bring a level of vital experience” to the role.

“(He) has been involved in key policy decisions that have not only altered Australian society, but also have international implications for other countries facing similar issues including the environmental conservation and energy crises,” he said.

In a letter to the Australian Stock Exchange, Fortescue said Mr Turnbull’s record in public life showed a strong track-record of promoting clean energy.

“Mr Turnbull has been a strong advocate for action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and promote sustainable development,” it said in a statement to investors.

It cited his support for an emissions trading scheme and Snowy Hydro 2.0 throughout his time in public life.

Mr Turnbull lost the Liberal leadership to Tony Abbott in 2009 over his support for Kevin Rudd’s emissions trading scheme.

In addition to his role at ASIS, Mr Warner served as a diplomat and as Defence Department secretary.

The role saw him take up senior roles in Iraq, Iran, and Afghanistan.


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