Stephen Conroy will have a new sparring partner when Parliament resumes next year, after new opposition leader Tony Abbott promoted Tony Smith to the shadow communications portfolio.In a major restructure, the former shadow communications minister Nick Minchin landed the resources and energy portfolio.Minchin resigned his post last week in an attempt to block the Coalition’s agreement on the Government’s emissions trading scheme.The issue saw a ministerial revolt that led to the ousting of the Opposition Leader Malcolm Turnbull in favour of Tony Abbott.Abbott praised Minchin’s contribution to the Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy portfolio in a statement on the Liberal website.“Nick successfully brought significant scrutiny to the Rudd Government’s $43 billion dollar ‘no business plan’ national broadband network,” Abbott said.“The Honourable Tony Smith will serve as the new Shadow Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy. “I believe that Tony’s considerable financial skills will increase scrutiny on the Government’s $43 billion broadband network which is being foisted on Australian taxpayers without even a business plan,” he said.
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