JACKIE O Julie Bishop is calling through as we speak. We are going to have a little chat with her.
KYLE SANDILANDS She is the Minister for Foreign Affairs. Is that correct?
JACKIE O Foreign Minister, yep.
KYLE SANDILANDS Let’s get her on right now.
Ms Bishop, hello, welcome.
JULIE BISHOP Hi, thank you.
KYLE SANDILANDS How’s things?
JULIE BISHOP Really good, how are you?
KYLE SANDILANDS Can we say you are our favourite Government Minister?
JULIE BISHOP You are allowed to say that but I might get into trouble!
KYLE SANDILANDS Why would you get into trouble?
JULIE BISHOP It is a very competitive world in which I live.
KYLE SANDILANDS Oh is it? Now we’ve seen you everywhere that’s fancy but you’ve got a big job, you’ve got to go round and make sure that everyone loves Australia and that we love everyone else. Is that a difficult gig?
JULIE BISHOP Not at all. I spend a lot of time in our region, in the Indian Ocean Asia Pacific, indeed I’ve just come back from Papua New Guinea. They are our closest neighbour, dearest friend and I spend a lot of time with them and also in the Pacific.
KYLE SANDILANDS Now you gave a heap of money to those people and they in return gave you four pigs.
JULIE BISHOP They did indeed. I’ve been in Enga Province which is in the Highlands. The pig is a sign of success, it is a spiritual animal, it is a very important part of the community, and so as a gesture of goodwill towards Australia I was given first two pigs, and one looked a lot like a warthog and was very feisty, and then I was given two more pigs and I’m told that is a very special privilege and honour but it is a little bit difficult to bring pigs home. I know people say pigs can fly but..
KYLE SANDILANDS You can’t bring them here.
JULIE BISHOP Believe me there have been a lot of jokes about pork barrelling, or bringing home the bacon, or whatever. But what I decided to do was, because the pigs are highly valued in dollar terms as well as in community and spiritual terms, I donated the four pigs back to the Immanuel Lutheran Hospital which I inspected up in Enga Province and they will be able to sell the pigs and make quite a lot of money, probably about $15,000 something like that..
KYLE SANDILANDS Oh wow! They will love you.
JULIE BISHOP ..and then they will be able to buy medical equipment and other resources that those hospitals desperately need.
KYLE SANDILANDS Is it true, the rumour was, you couldn’t bring the pigs back because Barnaby Joyce wouldn’t allow them in.
JACKIE O You don’t want to get on his bad side, do you?
KYLE SANDILANDS If I could send a private jet there if [inaudible]
JULIE BISHOP If Johnny Depp can’t get his dogs in I don’t know that I’d be getting Highland pigs in too easily!
KYLE SANDILANDS I think you’ve done a great job donating them back to the community up there because they are our closest neighbours and they need a helping hand don’t they?
JULIE BISHOP Well they are our very closest neighbours, our dearest friends, we work very closely with Papua New Guinea. They are the only country that Australia has ever been the administrator of - up until 1975 Australia was the colonial administrator of Papua New Guinea. We have very close historical ties but also trading, investing and working closely with them and we spend a significant amount of money on development assistance because it is in our interests for PNG to be a safe, secure, prosperous nation.
JACKIE O Have you received any unusual gifts from these countries; because I remember, didn’t Julia Gillard receive from Vietnam a portrait made entirely out of coffee beans?
JULIE BISHOP How fascinating. I received paintings from PNG, sand paintings, this is also unique to Enga Province up in the Highlands. They do these different coloured paintings with pressed sand on a board. I receive all sorts of unusual gifts which are all declared in the register of course.
KYLE SANDILANDS Of course.
JACKIE O What does Australia give as gifts?
JULIE BISHOP I tend to give scarves to the women, particularly beautiful silk scarves done by some of our female Aboriginal artists. I’ve given paintings, Australian paintings, anything that is made in Australia and is unique to Australia. I give away kangaroos to the children or koalas because the young children particularly in the Pacific Islands adore our kangaroos and koalas.
KYLE SANDILANDS Is that where all the Ken Done paintings have gone? Have you given them away all over the world?
JULIE BISHOP They are very popular.
KYLE SANDILANDS I haven’t seen them for ages.
JACKIE O Yes they’re not around anymore.
KYLE SANDILANDS And also I saw you over with Rebel Wilson sitting over there at LA Fashion Week. From up in New Guinea, over to LA, you’re all over the shop!
JULIE BISHOP There are considerable contrasts in this job. You go from one side of the world to the other, northern hemisphere to southern hemisphere. The LA Fashion Week was an important part of what we are calling ‘fashion diplomacy’. The Australian fashion industry is worth about $12 billion annually to Australia and about 220,000 people are employed directly by our fashion industry and Australian fashion designers and manufacturers, all of those involved in the fashion industry, are very popular on the world stage. At LA Fashion Week, which is one of the biggest trade shows in the fashion industry, we had two Australian designers showing their clothes and they were very popular.
There was a big Hollywood crowd including Hugh Sheridan, Rebel Wilson and Brett Ratner and we had a lot of Hollywood people there who gave it that exposure in the Hollywood media but also in the fashion media and that is where the buyers come from - our clothes are bought, that leads to more jobs, that leads to economic growth.
KYLE SANDILANDS I see in the paper today you were out there with Brett Ratner, he wants to bring Hollywood to Australia again.
JULIE BISHOP That’s right. We have been able to announce that two blockbuster films will now be produced in Australia as a result of the Turnbull Government offering a tax incentive and that will be Chris Hemsworth’s Thor and then Ridley Scott, you know the producer Ridley Scott, Prometheus 2, well it’s the next in the Alien series. These are worth hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Australian economy, millions of dollars.
KYLE SANDILANDS Has anyone got the rights to the hot dog cart down there at Fox Studios yet? I’d like to jump in and get a licence.
JULIE BISHOP Funny you should say that. About 6000 Australian businesses are normally engaged or contracted to work on any one film of this size and about 2000, maybe 3000 Australians are employed to work on these big films. So what we are wanting to do is get a pipeline of these films so that Australia is a desired location for film production because it is worth a lot of money, a lot of jobs.
JACKIE O I know you probably don’t have a lot of spare time on your hands but I wonder do you watch those political shows like House of Cards, Madam Secretary?
KYLE SANDILANDS Oh I love Madame Secretary. That’s you - you’re the Australian Madame Secretary!
JACKIE O I look at that and think – I wonder if Julie Bishop watches this.
JULIE BISHOP Yes I’ve watched House of Cards, I watch Madam Secretary and I also watch VEEP.
KYLE SANDILANDS Oh but VEEP’s too jokey for you, isn’t it?
JULIE BISHOP I think the language is more likely to be relevant in VEEP than House of Cards but you know..
JACKIE O Do you watch Madam Secretary and think, oh this is so not what it is like?
JULIE BISHOP Sometimes, there are parts of it that are what it is like but of course not all of it happens in one day. I remember years ago when I was a lawyer and LA Law came out and everybody said ‘gee your life must be so glamorous’! I’m there - yes, what happens in one series would happen over five years.
JACKIE O Exactly.
KYLE SANDILANDS There is no show about the glamorous life of a radio announcer. Do you reckon you can speak to Ratpac and get that happening?
JULIE BISHOP Now there is a thought and who would we get to star in it? Now let me think about that.
KYLE SANDILANDS I don’t know. I’m racking my brain! Who is the biggest and the weirdest, I can’t think of anyone.
It’s lovely to have you on, thanks for taking the time.
JACKIE O We do have to apologise though, I know intern Pete hit you up at the Melbourne Cup and he was quite inappropriate.
JULIE BISHOP Inappropriate is one word, yes.
KYLE SANDILANDS Another word - ugly?
JACKIE O Let’s have a listen for those that missed it. This was what intern Pete said to Foreign Minister Julie Bishop.
KYLE SANDILANDS Bearing in mind he’s on a government subsidy Minister. It’s half your fault.
JULIE BISHOP He is an intern.
KYLE SANDILANDS Roll the tape.
[Clip of interview with intern Pete]
KYLE SANDILANDS I’m sorry he even said that, so apologies again.
JULIE BISHOP Did you like the way I turned it into an interview where I was interviewing intern Pete?
JACKIE O I know.
JULIE BISHOP I asked more questions of him than he did of me. I think he’ll be an intern for another couple of years yet.
KYLE SANDILANDS Guaranteed. Hey, we’ve just had Oprah Winfrey on half an hour ago, she’s really excited to come back here at the end of the year. Are you going to watch her?
JULIE BISHOP That’s fantastic. She has made such a difference to tourism in this country because she is such a popular figure in the United States and when Australia is showcased on a program like Oprah it has enormous spin off effects in Australia. So that’s wonderful.
KYLE SANDILANDS I’ll save you a seat down in the front row then.
JULIE BISHOP Thank you.
KYLE SANDILANDS Thank you Minister.
Julie Bishop there, Minister for Foreign Affairs. She is our Madam Secretary.
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