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Rudd sworn in as Australian PM,faces tough poll challenge

Kevin Rudd was sworn in as Australian prime minister for the second time on Thursday,a day after toppling Julia Gillard and three months

Written by Reuters | Canberra |
June 28, 2013 3:53:08 am

Kevin Rudd was sworn in as Australian prime minister for the second time on Thursday,a day after toppling Julia Gillard and three months ahead of elections in which opinion polls show ruling Labour Party faces a devastating defeat.

Rudd’s return as prime minister follows three years of squabbling within the Labour leadership and as the world’s 12th largest economy faces challenges stemming from a slowdown in top trade partner China.

Rudd,a Mandarin-speaking former diplomat,has highlighted the difficulties associated with “the end of China’s resource boom” and said he would work to rebuild the government’s strained relations with the business community.

He left open the option of changing the September 14 election date,telling parliament that prime ministers had the right to choose the date.

“There is not going to be a huge variation one way or the other,” he said.

Australian business was scathing of the political instability and urged Rudd to abandon laws that strengthen trade union access to the workplace and tighten rules for temporary skilled immigration.

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