LISBON: Economist Joaquim Miranda Sarmento was named Portugal’s new finance minister on Thursday as President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa approved the formation of a centre-right minority government.

The Democratic Alliance (AD) coalition won a general election on March 10 by a slim margin over the outgoing Socialists, falling far short of securing a working majority in a fragmented parliament.

The new government is led by Prime Minister-designate Luis Montenegro, from the Social Democratic Party (PSD), part of the AD.

With a doctorate in finance from Tilburg University in the Netherlands, Miranda Sarmento, 45, is a professor at the ISEG-Lisbon School of Economics and Management and has recently been a leading economic policy advisor to Montenegro.

After working in the finance ministry for a decade, Miranda Sarmento advised then President Anibal Cavaco Silva in 2012-16, and has led the parliamentary bench of Montenegro’s PSD since July 2022.

There will be 17 ministers serving under Montenegro, including European Parliament member Paulo Rangel as foreign minister.

Pedro Duarte was appointed parliamentary affairs minister and his role will be to negotiate with other parties in parliament.

After several reshuffles, the previous Socialist government had 17 ministers, nine of which were women. Montenegro’s line-up includes seven women.


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