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What I Learned – In major reshuffle, Jordan PM moves to push IMF-led economic reforms

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FILE PHOTO: Jordan’s Prime Minister Omar al-Razzaz speaks to the media during a news conference in Amman, Jordan April 9, 2019. REUTERS/Muhammad Hamed – RC1CF693CCE0/File Photo

AMMAN (Reuters) – Jordan’s Prime Minister Omar al Razzaz reshuffled a large part of his cabinet on Thursday, appointing a former palace advisor as finance minister to push forward with a mandate for economic reforms intended to spur growth in the debt-ridden country.

The reshuffle was Razzaz’s fourth since taking office almost a year and a half ago. It affected 11 ministries in all but left other key incumbents, notably the foreign affairs and interior ministers, unchanged.

As finance minister he brought in Mohammad Al Ississ, a Harvard-educated economist and former palace advisor, in place of Ezzedin Kanakriyah.[L8N27N5JE]

Al Ississ, who had been serving as planning minister, will lead a team overseeing the three-year economic program agreed with the International Monetary Fund. It covers long-delayed structural reforms and will seek to cut public debt to 77 percent of GDP by 2021 from 94 percent now.

Ayman Safadi, a long-time adviser to the royal family, who has been leading Jordan’s talks with Washington over its Middle East policy, remains as foreign minister.

Reporting by Suleiman Al-Khalidi; editing by John Stonestreet

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.



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