Jordan’s King Abdullah on Thursday swore in a new government led by a former World Bank economist and mandated to review a disputed tax system after widespread protests against IMF-driven austerity measures.
Abdullah appointed Omar al-Razzaz, a Harvard-educated economist outside the ranks of the traditional political elite, as prime minister last week.
Razzaz replaces Hani Mulki, a business-friendly politician who was dismissed to defuse public anger that led to triggered some of the largest popular protests in years.
Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi and Interior Minister Samir al Mubadeen kept their posts in Razzaz’s 28-member cabinet, dominated by a mix of conservative politicians and Western-leaning technocrats, including seven women.
Rajai Muasher, a conservative politician and influential banker and among Jordan’s wealthiest businessmen, was appointed as deputy prime minister.
Official sources said the government is expected to maintain traditional support for U.S. policies in the Middle East and continue with International Monetary Fund-guided reforms.