1988 in Australia
|1988 in Australia|
|Governor-General||Sir Ninian Stephen|
|Prime minister||Bob Hawke|
|Elections||NSW, Referendum, VIC|
- Monarch – Elizabeth II
- Governor-General – Sir Ninian Stephen
- Prime Minister – Bob Hawke
- Chief Justice – Sir Anthony Mason
State and Territory Leaders
- Premier of New South Wales – Barrie Unsworth (until 25 March), then Nick Greiner
- Premier of Queensland – Mike Ahern
- Premier of South Australia – John Bannon
- Premier of Tasmania – Robin Gray
- Premier of Victoria – John Cain Jr.
- Premier of Western Australia – Brian Burke (until 25 February), then Peter Dowding
- Chief Minister of the Northern Territory – Stephen Hatton (until 13 July), then Marshall Perron
- President of the Legislative Assembly of Norfolk Island – John Brown
Governors and Administrators
- Governor of New South Wales – Sir James Rowland
- Governor of Queensland – Sir Walter Campbell
- Governor of South Australia – Sir Donald Dunstan
- Governor of Tasmania – Sir Phillip Bennett
- Governor of Victoria – Davis McCaughey
- Governor of Western Australia – Gordon Reid
- Administrator of Norfolk Island – John Matthew (until 31 December), then William Campbell
- Administrator of the Northern Territory – Eric Johnston
- Australia's Bicentenary year, celebrations lasting throughout year.
- 17 January - The TV soap Home and Away is launched by Seven Network.
- 19 January - Federal Sport and Tourism Minister John Brown steps down for apparently misleading Parliament over his role in the tendering process for Brisbane's Expo contracts on December 10, 1987.
- 26 January – Australia Day, Australia celebrates its bicentennial day with the arrival of the First Fleet Re-enactment Voyage and a tall ships parade in Sydney Harbour.
- 5 February - New Liberal Party President, entrepreneur John Elliott, states publicly that the Liberals lack strong leadership and had not deserved to win at the previous election.
- 6 February - The 1988 Adelaide by-election is held for the Australian House of Representatives seat of Adelaide following Chris Hurford's retirement. Liberal candidate Michael Pratt wins the seat with a 9% swing, largely because Labor refused to rule out a proposal for timed local telephone calls.
- 9 February - Australian Labor Party President Mick Young is forced to resign from Parliament over allegations (later disproved) of concealing a large donation from Harris-Daishowa. In the ensuing reshuffle, Graham Richardson and Michael Duffy enter Cabinet.
- 19 March – Nick Greiner and the Liberal Party win the 1988 New South Wales state election in a landside, removing the ALP government of Barrie Unsworth. Greiner's Coalition of 39 Liberals and 20 Nationals wins 49.5% of the vote in the enlarged 109-seat House, leading comfortably over Labor with 43 seats and 7 others. Labor suffers a further fall of 10% in its vote. National Party leader Wal Murray becomes Deputy Premier of New South Wales.
- 26 March - The 1988 Port Adelaide by-election is held for the Australian House of Representatives seat of Port Adelaide following Mick Young's resignation. The election is won by Labor candidate Rod Sawford, despite an 11.1% swing to the Liberal Party.
- 9 April - At the Liberals' Federal Council meeting in Melbourne, Liberal leaders Jeff Kennett, John Olsen and Barry MacKinnon are reserved about a consumption tax. John Elliott's motion to broaden the tax is passed.
- 30 April – World Expo 88 opens in Brisbane, Queensland. The exhibition runs for 6 months hosting pavilions from over 70 countries and thrusts Brisbane into the international spotlight.
- 1 June - the British Government fail to stop the publication of Spycatcher by the ex-MI5 agent Peter Wright.
- 6 June - 10 June - The Australian Labor Party's biennial conference in Hobart sees the left faction defeated on the divisive issues of uranium mining, privatisation and tertiary education fees.
- 3 August - Federal Opposition Leader John Howard's draft One Australia policy taps latent concerns over Asian immigration and sparks damaging debate on this issue within the Coalition.
- 17 August - Foreign Minister Bill Hayden is announced as the next Governor-General. In the subsequent ministerial reshuffle, Gareth Evans receives the Foreign Affairs and Trade portfolio, Ralph Willis receives Industrial Relations, and Robert Ray receives Immigration, Local Government and Ethnic Affairs.
- 22 August - Federal Parliament reassembles for the Budget session in the new Parliament House, Canberra.
- 24 August - In the vote on a Labor motion repudiating race as a criterion for immigration, Liberals Ian McPhee, Philip Ruddock and Peter Baume cross the floor, while Wilson and Michael MacKellar abstain.
- 1 September – Acacia pycnantha proclaimed Australia's national floral emblem.
- 3 September – The 1988 Australian referendum is held and propositions on 4-year parliamentary terms, recognition of local government, religious liberty and other issues are defeated with 60% of the electorate voting against them.
- 26 September - Federal Opposition Leader John Howard sacks the National Party of Australia's John Stone from the Shadow Cabinet over a series of remarks about immigration and for not being a "team player".
- 1 October – The 1988 Victorian state election is held and the ALP government of John Cain is narrowly re-elected for a third term in Victoria.
- 8 October - The 1988 Oxley by-election is held for the Australian House of Representatives seat of Oxley vacated by Bill Hayden. Labor candidate Les Scott only narrowly wins the seat, suffering a 12% swing. Bill Hayden's world trip before taking up his appointment as the new Governor-General is criticised by the Federal Opposition and others.
- 12 October – Two officers of the Victoria Police are gunned down execution-style in the Walsh Street police shootings.
- 15 October – Aus Steam '88 commences in Melbourne, Victoria
- 30 October – World Expo 88 draws to a close after a 6-month spectacular.
- 4 December - In Sydney, Federal Opposition Leader John Howard launches a statement of principle and general policy entitled Future Directions which reveals that a Liberal government would encourage the introduction of external school examinations, establish a National Standards Monitoring Programme for schools and did not rule out the introduction of a consumption tax after the first term of a Coalition government. Based on intensive research in 20 marginal seats, the statement also speaks nostalgically of traditional values.
- 24 December - Arbitration Commission President Barry Maddern finds that the Remuneration Tribunal's November recommendations for a 29% increase in MP's salaries and allowances are justified.
Arts and literature
- 1 January – Australia Live, a four-hour celebration for Australia's bicentennial of European settlement airs on the ABC, SBS, the Nine Network and regional solus stations.
- 2 January – Imparja starts broadcasting to remote Central Australia via satellite It will have its official launch on 15 January.
- 17 January – The first episode of Home and Away goes to air.
- 17 January – A Current Affair debuts on Channel Nine, hosted by Jana Wendt.
- 24 January – Network Ten unveils its new logo, the "X" logo.
- 16 February – The Comedy Company debuts on Network 10 (1988–1990)
- 29 April – QSTV (now Seven Central) starts broadcasting to remote Eastern Australia via satellite.
- 20 May – Perth's third commercial television station NEW-10 opens, giving Perth the same number of stations as the eastern states.
- 10 September – Brisbane's TVQ-0 becomes TVQ-10. On the same day, Toowoomba's DDQ-10 becomes DDQ-0.
- Christopher Skase buys Perth's TVW-7 and SAS-7 from Alan Bond's Bell Group for $130 million, meaning that all stations in the Seven Network are owned by the one company for the first time.
- 50m penalty introduced in the VFL.
- 4 March – First game of rugby league played at the newly built Sydney Football Stadium. St. George defeat Eastern Suburbs 24-14.
- 5 March – Newcastle Knights play their first game in the NSWRL. At Newcastle International Sports Centre (later EnergyAustralia Stadium), Parramatta win 28–4. On the same day, the Gold Coast Giants (later Seagulls & finally Chargers) play their first game in the same competition. At Seagulls Stadium, Canterbury win 21–10.
- 6 March – Brisbane Broncos play their first match, defeating defending premiers Manly 44-10 at Lang Park.
- 11 June – In the 100th rugby league test between the two nations, Australia defeat Great Britain 17-6.
- 28 June - Australia retain the Ashes by defeating Great Britain in the 2nd Test of the 1988 Great Britain Lions tour.
- 17 July – Australia thrash reigning World Champions Argentina 4-1 in the Bicentennial Gold Cup, at Sydney Football Stadium.
- 24 July – Patrick Carroll wins the men's national marathon title, clocking 2:10:44 in Brisbane, while Karen McCann claims the women's title in 2:44:05.
- 11 September – Canterbury defeat Balmain 24-12 to win the 81st NSWRL premiership. It is the first Grand Final played at the S.F.S. & the last game for Steve Mortimer. The Grand Final was played early so that Channel Ten could broadcast the 1988 Seoul Olympics.
- 24 September – Hawthorn Hawks (22.20.152) defeat Melbourne Demons (6.20.56) to win the 92nd VFL premiership.
- 9 October – Australia defeat New Zealand 25-12 in the final of the Rugby League World Cup, played at Eden Park in Auckland.
- Debbie Flintoff-King wins gold in the women's 400m over Tatyana Ledovskaya (Soviet Union) in a photo finish by 0.01s.
- Duncan Armstrong wins gold in the men's 200m freestyle over Anders Holmertz of Sweden & race favourite Matt Biondi of the United States.
- Brownlow Medal awarded to Gerard Healy (Sydney.)
- 20 January – Nathan Jones, Australian footballer
- 22 January – Steve Constanzo, basketball player
- 15 February
- 22 February – Dane Searls, BMX rider (d. 2011).
- 3 April – Daniel Johnson, basketball player
- 20 April – Michael Jennings, Australian-Tongan rugby league player.
- 26 April – Daniel Jackson, basketball player
- 13 May – Casey Donovan, singer, Indigenous TV host.
- 26 May – Dani Samuels, discus thrower.
- 11 June – Claire Holt, actress.
- 16 June – Nathan Parsons, actor.
- 17 June
- 3 July – Tyson Demos, basketball player
- 4 August – Liam Zamel-Paez, high jumper.
- 22 August – Mitchell Langerak, football (soccer) goalkeeper.
- 1 September – Taryn Marler, actress.
- 14 September – Nick Percat, racing driver
- 1 October – Cariba Heine, actress.
- 18 October – Chris Cedar, basketball player
- 24 October – Chris Goulding, basketball player
- 3 November – Angus McLaren, actor.
- 9 November
- 30 November – Phillip Hughes, cricketer (d. 2014).
- 7 December – Emily Browning, actress.
- Lenore, Taylor (5 December 1988). "Howard launches 'Future Directions' - Schools, tax head blueprint". The Canberra Times, p.1.