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Blair visit

Photo: Jenny Denton

Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, who is on an Australian speaking tour, was in Melbourne today and met for talks with Prime Minister Julia Gillard.

Mr Blair expressed support for the government’s plan to reduce carbon emissions, but declined to comment on details of the policy.

The former leader spoke about a worldwide move to reduce CO2 emissions, which he said was about energy security as well as minimising the impacts of climate change.

“Around the world right now people are moving towards a low-carbon economy as the future,” Mr Blair said, “The only way you do that in the end is you put some sort of price on carbon.”

He said the introduction of a climate change levy and emissions trading scheme in the UK had been “fraught”.

“These things are always tough to begin with.”

Mr Blair siad a lot of work is being done in Europe on clean technology industries, and that these have “enormous potential”.

Phone hacking

On the News Limited phone hacking scandal, the former Prime Minister said it was important to examine the relationship between the media and politicians.

But Mr Blair was confident his calls hadn’t been intercepted when he was PM. He said he didn’t own a mobile phone at the time.


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