Ukraine: Chocolate tycoon named economics minister.
Ukraine’s President Viktor Yanukovych has named a confectionary tycoon the new economics minister as part of a government reshuffle ahead of parliamentary elections in the fall.
Petro Poroshenko, aged 46, was one of the leaders of the 2004 Orange Revolution that threw out Yanukovych’s fraud tainted victory in the presidential vote. But he has drifted away from the Orange camp since then and has cooperated with Yanukovych, who was elected president in 2010.
Estimated at $1 billion by Forbes magazine, his business assets include a number of confectionary plants, shipbuilding and auto-making enterprises and a TV channel.
Poroshenko will have to deal with a cash-strapped economy after the International Monetary Fund froze a $15.6 billion loan over the government’s refusal to implement austerity measures.