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ATHENS: New conservative Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis on Monday announced a cabinet with many technocrats in junior posts and only a handful of women as he embarked on a mission to revitalise the country's sluggish economy.

The new finance minister is Christos Staikouras, a 45-year-old former junior finance minister in 2012-15 and shadow finance minister since 2015.

London City University graduate Staikouras inherits a slowly growing economy, a still-huge debt, and challenging talks with Greece's creditors to soften fiscal targets pledged by the previous leftist government of Alexis Tsipras.

The foreign ministry goes to Nikos Dendias, 59, who was public order minister when a historic probe began into the neo-Nazi Golden Dawn party following the 2013 murder of an anti-fascist rapper.

A former socialist minister who helped crack Greece's deadliest extremist organisation, the far-left November 17, 63-year-old Michalis Chrysohoidis was given the citizen's protection ministry.

Greece's new defence minister is 53-year-old lawyer Nikos Panagiotopoulos, while Giorgos Koumoutsakos, a 57-year-old former ministry spokesman, will take over the migration ministry.

Two former far-right cadres also received nods by Mitsotakis, who became PM on Sunday with a landslide election victory.

Adonis Georgiadis, 46, is the new minister in charge of development and investment.

A firebrand TV book salesman, Georgiadis had to publicly apologise in 2017 for energetically promoting an anti-Semitic tome on his shows.

Similarly, the new agriculture minister Makis Voridis, 54, founded a now-defunct ultra-nationalist party affiliated with France's then National Front party.

Voridis, who joined New Democracy in 2012, was also in the 1980s general secretary of a youth group created by jailed dictator Georgios Papadopoulos.

Five women are part of the new cabinet, including 38-year-old lawyer Niki Kerameus as education minister.

The cabinet will be sworn in on Tuesday, and hold its first meeting on Wednesday.

The incoming team struggled Tuesday to update the prime minister's official Twitter account.

Postings made by former PM Alexis Tsipras were simply updated with Mitsotakis' picture, their content unchanged.

Former banker Mitsotakis has pledged to create jobs and "steamroll" obstacles to business.

The tricky balancing act of keeping Greece's international creditors happy while easing the hardship on Greeks -- by lowering taxes and renegotiating fiscal targets -- could result in a short honeymoon phase for Mitsotakis.

Copyright AFP (Agence France-Press), 2019
 

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