Prime Minister Julia Gillard and Governor-General Quentin Bryce during Australia Day celebrations in Canberra this year. Photo: Andrew Meares
Governor-General Quentin Bryce has been given a bonus six months in Government House.
Julia Gillard announced today that The Queen - on the Prime Minister's advice - had agreed Ms Bryce would serve for an extended term until March 2014.
''The Governor-General has carried out her duties with distinction,'' Ms Gillard said in a statement.
Ms Bryce was appointed as Australia's 25th Governor-General in September 2008 for a five year term, which was due to end late next year — around the time the federal election is expected.
So far, Australia's first female governor-general has delivered 668 speeches, attended 1029 separate events throughout Australia, 606 separate events overseas and hosted 564 official functions.
Ms Bryce has also received 746 callers and assented to 679 pieces of legislation passed by the Federal Parliament.
The conventional term of a governor-general is five years, however former governor-general Bill Hayden also served an extended term, from 1989 to 1996.
Ninian Stephen also served from 1982 to 1989.
Opposition Leader Tony Abbott welcomed the extension of Ms Bryce's term, saying the Governor-General had served with distinction.
"The Governor-General has maintained a busy schedule here and overseas and has helped hundreds of thousands of Australians and thousands of organisations better appreciate their role in our national life," Mr Abbott said.
"We know that Her Excellency will continue to bring credit to the office of Governor-General and Mr Bryce will continue to provide support to her service."