6 Mar 2018

'Mr Fix-It, the 'Super Minister' - Who was Steven Joyce?

3:15 pm on 6 March 2018

He's been called "Mr Fix-It", the "Super Minister," even "Dildo Baggins".

National Party MP Steven Joyce

National Party MP Steven Joyce Photo: RNZ / Rebekah Parsons-King

Senior National MP Steven Joyce is hanging up his towel, retiring from politics.

Before coming to Parliament, Mr Joyce had a successful business career.

At age 21, he started his first radio station, Energy FM, in his home town of New Plymouth.

Over the next 17 years, he - and his two business partners - built up RadioWorks, helping develop music brands The Edge and The Rock.

Finance Minister Steven Joyce

Mr Joyce delivers his budget in 2017 Photo: RNZ / Rebekah Parsons-King

With Mr Joyce at the helm, RadioWorks expanded to 22 local radio stations and four national radio networks with 650 staff.

In 2000, the company was purchased by Canadian company Canwest. Mr Joyce retired as managing director the following year.

Mr Joyce then entered politics, spearheading a major review of National's disastrous 2002 election result.

Steven Joyce unveiling the new SkyCity convention centre design. 26 May 2015.

Steven Joyce unveiling the new SkyCity convention centre design. Photo: RNZ / Todd Niall

In 2008, he chaired National's election campaign, entered Parliament as a list MP and was immediately appointed a Cabinet minister.

He went on to manage five elections for the party.

Finance Minister Steven Joyce, left, was taken over the Pouakai Crossing by New Plymouth MP Jonathan Young at the weekend.

Finance Minister Steven Joyce, left, at the Pouakai Crossing by New Plymouth with MP Jonathan Young Photo: RNZ / Robin Martin

During his time in government, he held the Transport, Associate Finance, Economic Development, Science and Innovation, Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment portfolios.

He then became Finance Minister in 2016 after John Key stepped down as Prime Minister, taking over from Bill English who moved into the top spot.

US comedian John Oliver discusses the dildo incident

Comedian John Oliver mocks Steven Joyce Photo: YouTube

Mr Joyce discovered world-wide fame after being hit by a dildo thrown at him at Waitangi in 2016. At the time Mr Joyce posted a tweet saying, "Someone send the gif over to John Oliver so we can get it over with"

During the 2017 election Mr Joyce came under fire for accusing Labour of having an $11.7 billion "fiscal hole" in their budget plan.

National's Steven Joyce, left, RNZ host Guyon Espiner, and Labour's Grant Robertson in Morning Report's Auckland studio.

Battle of the finance spokespeople. Mr Joyce and Grant Robertson, right, in the Morning Report studio with Guyon Espiner. Photo: RNZ / Matthew Hutching

The overwhelming majority of economists said his numbers were wrong, though one agreed with him that it would be a challenge for Labour to govern within its budget.

He recently ran for the position of National party leader after Bill English resigned, but was unsuccessful.

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