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Bob Hawke, Australia's longest serving Labour PM dies at 89

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Bob Hawke, one of Australia's longest-serving prime ministers and a champion of the trade union movement, died on Thursday at the age of 89.

cited a statement released by Hawke's widow Blanche D'Alpuget, describing the late 23rd of as "the greatest Australian of the post-war era."

Known affectionately as "Hawkie," he served as the of from 1983 to 1991, winning four elections and becoming the country's third longest-serving

"and and their governments modernised the Australian economy, paving the way for an unprecedented period of recession-free economic growth and job creation," the statement read.

According to the Museum of Australian Democracy, Hawke, being a Rhodes Scholar from the in 1956, quickly rose through the ranks of Australia's trade union movement to become the of the of Trade Unions in 1970.

In 1983, with only three years of experience of serving in the Parliament, became the and served the country for almost nine years.

is also remembered as one of the major economic reformers in his country who with his then-liberalised the Australian economy, floating the Australian dollar and brought in for all citizens, reported.

In a statement, opposition said that "the Australian people loved because they knew Bob loved them."

"In Australian history, in Australian politics, there will always be B.H. and A.H: Before Hawke and After Hawke. After Hawke, we were a different country. A kinder, better, bigger and bolder country," the statement said.

In addition, Prime Minister extended his condolences to Hawke's family saying, "My thoughts and deepest sympathies are with Bob's widow Blanche and his family. May he Rest In Peace."

He said Hawke "had a unique ability to speak to all Australians and will be greatly missed."

"was a great Australian who led and served our country with passion, courage, and intellectual horsepower that made our country stronger," Morrison tweeted.

"He was true to his beliefs in the tradition and defined the politics of his generation and beyond," he added.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, May 16 2019. 18:04 IST