New Zealand PM-elect announces cabinet line-up

By Xinhua,

Wellington : New Zealand Prime Minister-elect John Key on Monday announced a 20-strong cabinet and three other ministerial positions after he cut deals Sunday that secured a strong majority for his National party-led government.

Support TwoCircles

The list includes first-time ministers Simon Power (justice), Anne Tolley (education) and Chris Finlayson (treaty negotiations).

Gerry Brownlee takes the energy portfolio, Tony Ryall the health portfolio, Nick Smith the environment, Tim Groser trade and Murray McCully foreign affairs.

Key will act as tourism minister while his deputy Bill English will be finance minister.

National’s most senior MP Lockwood Smith becomes the Parliament’s next speaker.

On Sunday, Key handed out five ministerial positions outside Cabinet to National party’s support partners.

Through those agreements with Act Party, the Maori Party and United Future Party, Key has ensured he will have 70 confidence votes in the 122-member Parliament.

Pita Sharples will be Maori Affairs Minister and Tariana Turia, co-leader pf the Maori Party, will be in charge of the community and voluntary sector. They will both also hold associate portfolios.

Act Party leader Rodney Hide takes local government and the new portfolio of regulatory reform, while his deputy Heather Roy picks up consumer affairs and associate education and defense roles.

United Future party leader Peter Dunne retains the revenue and associate health ministerial roles he had under the Labor-led Government.

The total size of Key’s executive is 28, the same as the previous Labor-led government’s after the 2005 election.

The Cabinet and ministers outside it are due to be sworn in on Wednesday and Key will fly out on Thursday to attend the APEC leaders meeting summit in Peru.

The New Zealand Parliament is expected to be recalled on Dec. 8to sit for two weeks.

New Zealand held general elections on Nov. 8. The National party, led by John Key, defeated the Labor party.