Macfarlane changes mind after landing lucrative role
UPDATE 1PM: It appears Groom MP Ian Macfarlane has changed his mind after landing a lucrative job in the resources industry.
Mr Macfarlane had reportedly made it through the selection process to earn the role of resources investment commissioner but this morning turned down the role.
The outgoing and longest-serving resources minister in Australia said he would continue to represent his electorate until the next election at which time he would retire from politics.
"I congratulate the Queensland Government on its plan to establish a resources investment commissioner, to continue to build Queensland's advantage in the globally competitive resources sector," Mr Macfarlane said in a blanket statement.
"I thank the Queensland Government for its offer; however my first responsibility is to continue to represent the people of Groom and to continue to support the Turnbull Government in delivering good government for the people of Australia."
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk this morning confirmed Mr Macfarlane had applied for the role which had been publically advertised since the position was created in November last year.
She told reporters at a press conference in Brisbane this morning that, due to the importance of the role and its contribution to the state's economy and jobs creation, the successful applicant must start "as soon as possible".
That appeared to conflict with Mr Macfarlane's priorities which he said rested with Groom and Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, under whom the veteran MP was dumped from the high-profile front bench position as Industry Minister.
"I am very keen to continue to build on my expertise outside parliament, especially in a manner that will allow me to use my experience and my extensive contacts in the bipartisan manner that has always characterised my time in politics," Mr Macfarlane said.
"Australia is a resources and energy superpower and Queensland in particular has great opportunities to build on our strong resources foundation in the mineral and natural gas sectors and I look forward to playing a part in growing the resources sector, the jobs and the economic growth that comes with that."
11AM: ANY position Ian Macfarlane is appointed with the State Government will be based on merit according to Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk.
Speaking at a press conference in Brisbane this morning, Ms Palaszczuk confirmed the Groom MP had applied to be the next resources commissioner.
She said it was an advertised position.
"It is a merit-based selection process," Ms Palaszczuk said.
She confirmed Mr Macfarlane had applied for the position but any appointment would be up to the department's director-general.
She said it was "no secret" Mr Macfarlane would not contest the next federal election, and she credited him for his long service to the seat of Groom.
She said the position had been advertised and open to any applicants but confirmed Mr Macfarlane had not been given the role.
She said the position needed to be filled quickly and the successful applicant would need to start "as soon as possible".
Mr Macfarlane announced earlier this year he would not run for re-election.
9.45AM: Member for Groom Ian Macfarlane could soon working for the Queensland Government.
The former minister was reportedly offered a job with the Queensland Government and may leave Parliament before the next election.
Mr Macfarlane has reportedly been offered the job of resources commissioner.
The post was created in November last year to attract resource investment in Queensland.
In February the long-serving politician announced he would not contest the next election.
He was dumped from the ministry of Industry and Science in September following Malcolm Turbull's leadership spill.
The politician, who represents the Toowoomba region, then attempted to defect to the Nationals but that was blocked by the LNP state executive.
If Mr Macfarlane leaves Parliament early it could mean a by-election for the seat of Groom.
Mr Macfarlane could not be immediately contacted for comment.