Page 33 - Week 01 - Tuesday, 14 February 2006

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director of the Liberal Party is the former CEO of the local AHA; Mr Mulcahy, economic spokesperson, is a former chief executive of the AHA—maybe this proposition might have made some reference, before being published, to what the AHA thought about it. I don’t know whether they did or not.

I am advised—it has been claimed in the media by the Leader of the Opposition—that this had full party room support before the event. We might have a wider and deeper debate on this so that each of the members of the opposition can rise in this place and place in Hansard the fact that they were part of a party room discussion and agreement—we won’t say “unanimous” but at least a majority vote—before the event so that it became policy.

Mr Mulcahy: It was.

MR QUINLAN: I am glad to hear it because that means that you all own it. Do you? I read in the paper that Mr Mulcahy doesn’t quite own it. If you read what Mr Mulcahy has said about it, he said, “You can’t do sums if you are not in government.” What, you don’t get a calculator? I don’t know. “You can’t talk to people about viability because you are not in government.” If ever there was a recanting of support for this particular proposal, it is there in black and white. I have got to say that I agree with the Canberra Times, the wonderful newspaper that it is, that the ACT government is entitled to be sceptical about the opposition’s proposal.

MR SPEAKER: The minister’s time has expired.

MR GENTLEMAN: Minister, are you aware of any financial analysis that has been carried out to support the convention centre proposal?

MR QUINLAN: Thank you, Mr Gentleman, for the supplementary question. I heard Mr Smyth claim, in the public forum, that developers and financiers—plural—had come to his door to support him. In fact, he appeared on television with a gentleman from Equilibrium Strategic Marketing Pty Ltd.

Mr Speaker, I have to tell you that I love Google. I have had a little look at Google. Yes, there is, you will be pleased to know, an Equilibrium Strategic Marketing Pty Ltd. It is a firm with two directors, Rob and Jill, who live in Isaacs. The head office is a post office box at the Canberra City PO.

Mr Stanhope: This is an international company, with its office in Canberra.

MR QUINLAN: Yes. Right on. Of all these many financiers that beat a path to Mr Smyth’s door, he selected Rob and Jill. I am sure Rob and Jill are very nice people. They have a connection with Corofin Capital. I am sure you have all heard of it; I hadn’t. I am sure the opposition has heard of them and checked their credentials. They are involved in passive investment. That is their claim.

Funding for the proposals would have four criteria: it has got to be big, $50 million to $500 million plus; it has got to be for 20 years. So far, so good. The rental has to be paid monthly in advance, and a senior partner must be rated by Standard & Poor’s. Whoever Corofin is or are—there is an island by that name somewhere near England—amongst all

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