Newly installed Liberal Democratic Party chief Fumio Kishida officially unveiled the ruling party’s new executive lineup Friday, elevating a close ally of former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to the No. 2 role while also naming a junior lawmaker, Tatsuo Fukuda, to lead the party’s highest decision-making body in a move some described as reckless.
Kishida tapped former trade minister and influential 12-term lawmaker Akira Amari, who belongs to the party’s Aso faction, to be secretary-general. Amari, 72, is close to both Abe and Finance Minister Taro Aso and is a champion of the Abenomics economic policy package. He also played an important role in Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations and is known as an expert in tax policy, having served as the chair of the party’s Research Commission on the Tax System.