Yoshihide Suga formally elected as Japan’s new Prime Minister

Japan's Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga

New Delhi (NVI): Japanese ruling party leader Yoshihide Suga has been elected as the new Prime Minister in a in a parliamentary vote Wednesday, becoming the country’s first new premier in nearly eight years.

Suga’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party used its majority in the lower house of parliament, which is empowered to pick the premier, and elect him to lead the world’s third largest economy as it tries to recover from the coronavirus pandemic.

Following the vote, Suga is due to enter the Prime Minister’s Office as the new leader and name his cabinet later in the day.

The 71-year-old Suga – the son of a strawberry farmer – won the leadership contest of the governing Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) on Monday and was all but assured the top job when his appointment went to a vote in parliament given the party’s two-thirds majority.

Suga, who previously served as Abe’s right-hand man, has pledged to keep in place his former boss’s flexible fiscal stance and ultra-easy monetary policy known as “Abenomics.”

India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi today sent a congratulatory message to Japan’s new prime minister.

“Heartiest congratulations to Excellency Yoshihide Suga on the appointment as Prime Minister of Japan @kantei. I look forward to jointly taking our Special Strategic and Global Partnership to new heights. @sugawitter” Modi said in a Twitter post.