Bahrain: King orders cabinet reshuffle, names new oil minister

i24NEWS - AFP/Reuters

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Bahrain's King Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa during a meeting with Saudi Arabia's crown prince at the Sukheir Royal Palace in the capital Manama, on December 9, 2021.
Bandar AL-JALOUD / Saudi Royal Palace / AFPBahrain's King Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa during a meeting with Saudi Arabia's crown prince at the Sukheir Royal Palace in the capital Manama, on December 9, 2021.

Bahrain's last cabinet reshuffle was in 2002, when ten new ministers were appointed

Bahrain's King Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa ordered a cabinet reshuffle on Monday, including appointing a new oil minister. 

Mohammed bin Mubarak Bin Dainah, the country's envoy for climate affairs, was named minister of oil and environment, replacing Oil Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa bin Ahmed Al Khalifa.

"The reshuffle, the largest in the country’s history, has resulted in a change of 17 out of 22 ministers, with the introduction of a large proportion of young ministers, including four females," a government spokesperson said, according to Reuters

Crown Prince and Prime Minister Salman bin Hamad al-Khalifa said the reshuffle "will bring new ideas and a renewed drive to continue advancing the public sector," the state news agency (BNA) quoted him as saying on Monday.

Bahrain's last cabinet reshuffle was in 2002, when ten new ministers were appointed. The only other cabinet reshuffle was in 1973.

Three of the four deputy prime minister positions were axed in the current reshuffle, leaving Sheikh Khalid bin Abdullah al-Khalifa as the sole deputy PM.

Bahrain, a member of the OPEC-plus group of oil producers, carried debts standing at 129 percent of GDP last year, according to the International Monetary Fund.

But high oil prices and the growth of non-oil GDP should help it carry out economic reforms and work towards balancing the budget, the IMF said last month.

The island nation, which has a population of just 1.7 million and was hit by unrest during the Arab Spring protests of 2011, broke with Arab consensus by normalizing relations with Israel in 2020.

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