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Spain's PM Rajoy names insiders in new cabinet

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Spain's PM Rajoy names insiders in new cabinet


The new Spanish prime minister has chosen mostly close advisers to make up his cabinet, which has the unenviable task of reviving a floundering economy and keeping the country solvent.

Mariano Rajoy has already promised deep spending cuts across government departments to cut the deficit.

His enforcer will be Luis de Guindos at the head of the economy ministry. A former executive at the ruined bank Lehman Brothers, he will be seeking to sell more austerity to a country where one in five is jobless.

José Manuel Garcia Margallo becomes Spain’s foreign minister. The 67-year-old MEP is credited with shaping Rajoy’s European policy, and his appointment suggests a desire to engage in Europe’s efforts to reform.

That is likely to mean an overhaul of Spain’s rigid labour laws, which will be overseen by economist Fatima Bañez who has been named labour minister.

Rajoy was officially sworn in on Wednesday before King Juan Carlos, to become only the sixth Spanish prime minister since the Franco dictatorship.

He replaces the socialist Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, who paid the price for his handling of the economic crisis at last month’s general election.

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