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Rene Cornejo Named New Prime Minister Of Peru
Cornejo, who replaces Cesar Villanueva, becomes the fifth prime minister to serve under President Humala. He had previously been the housing minister, a position he held since President Humala took office in July 2011.
Prior to his posts in the cabinet, Cornejo had worked as the executive director of Peru's private investment promotion agency, known as ProInversion. He has an engineering degree and an MBA from Peruvian universities.
Villanueva stepped down from the post on Monday, however he did not mention the reasons for his resignation.
Villanueva handed in his resignation less than four months after he was appointed to the post by President Ollanta Humala. He was the fourth prime minister to charge since the Peruvian leader took office in 2011.
Villanueva clarified that his departure from the cabinet does not mean a break with Ollanta Humala's administration, noting that he is willing to continue cooperating with the ongoing government.
The cabinet shuffle also included the resignation of Mines and Energy Minister Jorge Merino, who was appointed to the post in late 2011.
Merino was replaced by Eleodoro Mayorga, who was previously an associate consultant at the Lima-based Laub & Quijandria law firm.
Mayorga has a degree in petroleum engineering from Peru's Universidad Nacional de Ingenieria. He also has a doctorate in mathematics applied to economics from the Universite Paris X Nanterre in France, according to his profile on Laub & Quijandria's website.
Mayorga will take over the responsibility for Peru's key mining sector at a time when companies have lined up investments worth some $55 billion in new projects.
The government has been looking to reduce the length of time to approve permits for companies to facilitate investments, which is expected to boost mineral production.
Peru is the world's third biggest producer of copper by volume, and a major global producer of gold, silver and zinc, among other minerals. Minerals account for about 60% of Peru's total exports. The government has said that the startup of new projects will double Peru's copper production this decade.
A number of mining projects in Peru have faced delays due to permitting as well as opposition from rural communities concerned about the impact of mining on the environment, particularly the water supply.
President Humala also appointed Piero Ghezzi, a well-known economist that has worked at Barclays Capital, as production minister. Humala changed his agriculture minister, labor minister, housing minister, as well as women and social development minister.
Finance Minister Luis Miguel Castilla remained in his position.
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