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Gerry Brownlee is the Member of Parliament for the Christchurch constituency of Ilam, a seat he has held comfortably since 1996.

Ranked number four in Cabinet, he is Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister Responsible for the Earthquake Commission.

He became Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Minister since soon after a devastating 7.1 magnitude earthquake struck Christchurch on September 4 2010.

His role expanded following the February 22 2011 when a 6.3 magnitude quake hit the city, killing 185 people and resulting in widespread residential and commercial property destruction. The earthquakes, and subsequent rebuild of New Zealand's second largest city, are the country's costliest event.

Following a long involvement in the National Party, he won the constituency of Ilam in 1996. During his political career he has served as Junior Whip and Deputy Leader of the National Party, Leader of the House, Minister for Economic Development, Minister of Energy and Resources, Associate Minister for the Rugby World Cup, Minister of Transport, Minister of Defence, Minister supporting Greater Christchurch Recovery and Minister of Civil Defence.