New Japan PM Announces New Cabinet

Posted September 1st, 2011 at 11:10 pm (UTC-5)
Leave a comment

Japan's newly-appointed prime minister has announced a new government aimed at guiding the country through a fragile post-earthquake recovery and a shaky economy.

Yoshihiko Noda on Friday named Jun Azumi, a news reporter turned parliamentary affairs chief of the country's ruling Democratic party, as his new finance minister.

Koichiro Gemba, the outgoing national strategy minister, will become the Japan's new foreign minister.

Both Azumi and Gemba are under 50 years old, which makes them relatively young compared to the previous cabinet, which was dominated by more experienced statesmen. Both are also closely allied to Noda.

63-year-old Yoshio Hachiro was named as Noda's new minister of trade and economy.

Mr. Noda's full cabinet is expected to be announced later on Friday.

Mr. Noda is due to be sworn in as Japan's new prime minister Friday, after being confirmed by parliament on Tuesday.

He succeeds Naoto Kan, who stepped down last week amid deep public disapproval of his administration's handling of the earthquake and the crisis at the Fukushima nuclear power plant.

U.S. President Barack Obama has telephoned his congratulations to Mr. Noda Thursday, and discussed the importance of the U.S.-Japanese friendship and alliance to peace and stability in the Pacific. They also pledged to work closely to reenergize the global economy.