THE Tasmanian Chamber of Commerce and Industry has paid tribute to the former Minister for Economic Development, David O’Byrne, who lost his seat at the March state election.
TCCI chief executive Michael Bailey said it was sad to see Mr O’Byrne no longer in parliament and wished him well in his future endeavours.
‘‘In his capacity as minister, David O’Byrne was always willing to listen to our concerns and was genuine in his desire to assist the business community,’’ Mr Bailey said.
‘‘It is unfortunate for Tasmania that such promising careers in politics — that of Mr O’Byrne and former attorney general Brian Wightman — have been cut short and I hope this is not the last the Tasmanian community sees of either member.’’
Mr Bailey also thanked outgoing premier Lara Giddings for her support in what were difficult times for the state government. ‘‘Governing in minority can be a thankless task and on behalf of all our members I would like to thank Ms Giddings for her commitment and belief in a bright future for Tasmania as premier.
‘‘I would particularly like to thank Ms Giddings for her role in facilitating the business forum in Launceston early this year, which was the start of a genuine dialogue with the business community to get the state’s economy moving.’’
Mr Bailey also said he was delighted to see that long-time campaigner for small business, Guy Barnett, had been elected to parliament.
“Anybody who knows Guy knows that he is a passionate supporter of all things Tasmanian and, in particular, small business.”
‘‘So no doubt he will be a welcome addition to the political world.’’ Joining Mr Barnett in parliament is Sarah Courtney in Bass, a businesswoman with a national and international background in the finance and stockbroking sector.”
Other new faces within the Liberal party include North-West farmer Joan Rylah and former Cradle Coast Authority chief executive Roger Jaensch, while for Labor former deputy premier David Llewellyn will join, along with Hobart lawyer Madeline Ogilvie.
Mr Bailey also thanked former MHAs Graeme Sturges, Paul O’Halloran and Tim Morris for their efforts in parliament.