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The ABC has confirmed that Hamish Macdonald will be the new host of Australia’s weekly flagship discussion program Q&A.

Macdonald will also serve as a senior presenter across television and radio.

He will take over at Q&A from the start of the 2020 season in February and will also become a regular member of the RN Breakfast on-air team.

“I’m so passionate about telling the big stories of our time through Australian eyes, for an Australian audience,” said Macdonald.

“This role will be a huge opportunity to make the most complicated issues accessible, engaging and exciting for all Australians, no matter where you live, no matter what you believe.

“I’m proud to join this great Australian institution and can’t wait to serve the audience by continuing the big and important conversations each week.”

Director, News Gaven Morris said Macdonald was one of the brightest talents in Australian journalism.

“Hosting Q&A requires a special set of skills,” he said. “It needs someone who is articulate and also a great listener, well connected, interested in everything and fully across news and current events at home and abroad.

“Hamish can do all of that – and also brings his own brand of warmth and energy that audiences love. He is a terrific communicator, and an experienced and accomplished broadcaster.

“He is an integral part of our plans to continue to evolve Q&A alongside new Executive Producer Erin Vincent and the program team.”

ABC Head of Investigative and In-Depth Journalism John Lyons said: “Hamish’s energy and ability to draw from people their real concerns will further strengthen Q&A as a forum for reflecting the views of Australians and seeking ideas for the future.”

Hamish Macdonald replaces founding presenter Tony Jones, who departs Q&A at the end of this year after 12 years with the show.