Australian Labor leader Anthony Albanese has been sworn in as the country’s 31st prime minister, promising a “journey of change”, vowing to fight climate change, rising living costs and inequality.
The center-left Labor Party is returning to power after nine years in opposition as a wave of unprecedented support for green and climate-independent independents helped end nearly a decade of conservative liberal-national coalition rule in Saturday’s general election.
While votes are still being counted and the government is not yet complete, Mr Albanez has been sworn in so he can attend a summit of four leaders in Tokyo on Tuesday with US President Joe Biden, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishido and India. Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The Quad summit aims to expand cooperation between the four member countries of the group and discuss notable developments in the Indo-Pacific region.
Mr. AlbaneseThe 59-year-old Gov. David Hurley was sworn in at a ceremony in Canberra.
“This is a great day in my life, but a great day for the country when we change government,” Mr Albanese told reporters near his home in Sydney ahead of the ceremony.
“I want to direct the opportunity that we need to shape change so that we involve people with us in the path of change. I want to unite the country.”
Labor’s deputy leader Richard Marles and three key ministers – Penny Wong for foreign affairs, Jim Chalmers as treasurer and Katie Gallagher for finance – were also sworn in, and Ms. Wong will join Mr Albanese on the Quad.
Mr Albanese also said he had spoken to President Biden on Sunday night and was looking forward to meeting with him on Tuesday. He will return to Australia on Wednesday.
“This visit coincides with what the Albanese government sees as three pillars of Australia’s foreign policy: our alliance with the United States, our engagement with the region and our support for multilateral fora,” Mr Albanese said in a statement.
The Labor campaign focused on Mr Albanese’s job qualifications and his image as a pragmatic unifier.
According to TV channels, center-left Labor still lacks four seats to a majority of 76 in the lower house with 151 seats, with about a dozen races too close to their destination.
Some predicted that Labor would get enough seats to rule on their own.
The official results may be in a few days, counting 2.7 million votes by mail on Sunday.