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Greece's new PM Mitsotakis appoints cabinet

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By Euronews
FILE PHOTO: Greece's Deputy Finance Minister Staikouras addresses reporters, 2014
FILE PHOTO: Greece's Deputy Finance Minister Staikouras addresses reporters, 2014   -   Copyright  FILE PHOTO: REUTERS/Jorgos Karahalis

Just one day after his sweeping election victory, Greece's new Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis named his cabinet on Monday.

The newly-formed cabinet includes 51 ministers and only five women.

Christos Staikouras was appointed as finance minister, while Nikos Dendias will head the foreign ministry.

Staikouras, Greece's new finance minister

Staikouras, 45, is an economist by training. He was deputy finance minister in the conservative New Democracy government from 2012 to 2015, and most recently the party's coordinator for economic affairs.

Greeks hope the new government can make the country's economy work better after Greece emerged from the close surveillance of its international lenders last year.

Staikouras will be in charge of implementing Mitsotakis' economic programme. In his victory speech on Sunday, the new Prime Minister pledged to reduce tax, increase wages, boost investment and employment.

Dendias now foreign policy chief

Dendias, 59, is a former lawyer and previously served as defence, justice and citizen protection minister.

Euronews correspondent in Athens Fay Doulgkeri described Dendias as a 'very experienced politician' who will face 'very difficult times' for Greece's foreign policy amid tensions with Turkey over drilling off Cyprus.

READ MORE: EU expresses 'grave concern' as second Turkish ship plans to drill off Cyprus

The new government will also need to decide what to do with PRESPA - the North Macedonia name-change agreement concluded by the previous administration. Mitsotakis voiced his opposition to the deal during his campaign, attracting nationalist votes.

Mitsotakis' conservative New Democracy party won an outright majority with 158 seats in the 300-seat legislature.

"Today we get started on the hard work. I have absolute confidence in our abilities to rise to the occasion," Mitsotakis said after he was sworn in at a ceremony officiated by Greek Orthodox clergy at the presidential palace in Athens.

The change of guard was greeted with profit-taking on the Athens stock exchange after a strong rally in previous days.

READ MORE: Greek elections: Conservatives win power from Syriza

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