Big Twiggy-backed promotion for ex-NT chief minister

Former Northern Territory chief minister Michael Gunner has been promoted to lead three states as part of billionaire Andrew “Twiggy” Forrest’s green energy company.

Mr Gunner will direct the Australia West division of Fortescue Future Industries.

“It is a privilege to take on the task of leading Fortescue Future Industries across WA, SA and NT,” Mr Gunner wrote in an announcement on Facebook.

“I recognise the immensity of the responsibility our team has to create the green energy needed to renewably power the world.”

Mr Gunner joined Fortescue Future Industries last year, three months after quitting politics in the Top End.

He will remain in Darwin in his new role.

“Michael Gunner leading our Australia West projects from Darwin is a clear sign of FFI’s strong belief that North Australia is a huge part of Australia’s renewable future,” Mr Forrest said.

“The Top End has world-class solar resources and will play an important part in FFI’s mission to lead the world in stepping beyond fossil fuels.”

The promotion comes three months after Mr Forrest said he still had plans to build a giant solar farm in the Northern Territory, despite disputes over his Sun Cable project.

Mr Forrest had previously backed Sun Cable along with fellow billionaire Andrew Cannon-Brookes.

The solar farm would have been part of a key infrastructure project to supply power to Singapore via a 4,200km submarine cable.

Sun Cable collapsed into administration in January.

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