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Taiwan - politics

Post-typhoon reshuffle

Article published on the 2009-09-15 Latest update 2009-09-15 13:00 TU

Taiwan's new Premier Wu Den-yih in Taipei, 9 September, 2009.(Photo: REUTERS/Nicky Loh)

Taiwan's new Premier Wu Den-yih in Taipei, 9 September, 2009.
(Photo: REUTERS/Nicky Loh)

Taiwan replaced key ministers in a cabinet reshuffle on Wednesday. The new faces are taking over the economics, foreign, defence, interior and education portfolios. The government in Taipei is struggling to regain public support after criticism of its response to Typhoon Morakot in August.

Of the new appointments, Shih Yen-hsiang, currently the chairman of state-owned China Petroleum Corp., was made new economic affairs minister. The island's de facto ambassador to Indonesia, Timothy Yang, becomes foreign minister.

"Under the supervision of parliament and the public, we will try our best to live up to their high expectations," the new prime minister, Wu Den-yih told reporters in Taipei.

Wu is scheduled to take over the premiership on Thursday when the new cabinet is also due to be sworn in. His predecessor, Liu Chao-shiuan, resigned on Monday. He stood down in recognition of the government's response to Morakot. The typhoon and storm was the worst the island had seen in 50 years.

The government was seriously criticised for reacting too slowly to the typhoon damage, and for lack of efficiency.

More than 600 people died.