Burma President Appoints New Deputy Minister of Commerce

By The Irrawaddy 20 April 2017

RANGOON — U Aung Htoo was appointed as the deputy minister of commerce on Wednesday, according to the Burmese president U Htin Kyaw’s office.

U Aung Htoo is currently serving as Burma’s ambassador to Indonesia, said the president’s spokesman U Zaw Htay. He will fill the vacant position as the eleventh deputy ministerial appointee made under the National League for Democracy (NLD) government.

Since the NLD took office, the president has appointed 21 union ministers for a total of 22 ministries. As the exception, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi holds two positions—foreign minister and state counselor.

The government is yet to fill deputy minister positions for 11 ministries. Despite this need, former agriculture, livestock and irrigation deputy minister Dr. Tun Win was dismissed last November after serving for only seven months.

U Tun Win clashed with the NLD’s senior union minister Dr. Aung Thu and central executive committee member U Win Htein, allegedly over the former deputy minister’s proposals for the country’s agricultural sector.

The NLD has cut 14 ministries compared to the previous government under U Thein Sein, which established 36 ministries and employed 96 union and deputy ministers.