The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) announced on Friday that for the first time in its history, it will be headed by a female governor. Michelle Bullock, who is currently the RBA’s deputy governor, will replace outgoing governor Philip Lowe when she begins her seven-year term on 18 September, the BBC quoted a bank statement as saying. Bullock said, “coming into this role is a challenging time, but I will have the support of a strong executive team and board.” “I am committed to ensuring that the Reserve Bank delivers its policy and operational objectives for the benefit of the Australian people,” he said.
Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said on Twitter: “Congratulations to Michelle Bullock, Australia’s 9th Reserve Bank Governor. Michelle is an outstanding economist who has had a long and distinguished career at the central bank. At a critical time for the global economy, her job will be a “We believe he has the experience, expertise and fresh perspective to lead the RBA as Australia and the world face ongoing economic challenges.”
The Prime Minister thanked Lowe for “seven years of service to the nation, many years of which were passed at an unprecedented time”. In a statement, the outgoing governor said the central bank was in good hands as it tackled the rising cost of living, the BBC reported. He said, “The Treasurer has made a first class appointment. I wish Michelle the best of luck.” The RBA is under pressure to tackle inflation, which is causing the household budget to grow.
The central bank has raised interest rates 12 times since last May – to mixed reactions from economists. The RBA’s key interest rate is currently at an 11-year high of 4.1 per cent. Earlier this year, the Australian government released its first external review of the RBA in 40 years. The review made 51 recommendations, including calls for a clearer monetary policy framework and greater accountability for the central bank.