KUCHING: Sarawak Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg has announced a minor reshuffle of the state Cabinet, in line with the state's aim to achieve developed status by 2030.
The reshuffle was also necessary, following the resignation of Datuk Seri Wong Soon Koh as state Second Finance Minister, as well as International Trade and E-Commerce Minister last month.
At a press conference on Thursday (Aug 22), Abang Johari announced that Wong would be replaced as Second Finance Minister by Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah, who also retained his Agriculture, Native Land and Regional Development portfolio.
The International Trade and E-Commerce portfolio has been redesignated as the International Trade and Industry, Industrial Terminals and Entrepreneur Development Ministry headed by Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan, who is also a Deputy Chief Minister.
Assistant Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture Datuk Lee Kim Shin has been promoted to head the new state Transport Ministry, with Datuk Dr Jerip Susil as his Assistant Minister.
Piasau assemblyman Datuk Sebastian Ting is the sole new face in the line-up, replacing Lee as state Tourism, Arts and Culture Assistant Minister.
Other portfolios were redesignated, with the state Infrastructure Development and Transportation Ministry now known as Infrastructure and Ports Development, headed by Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri James Masing.
The state Tourism, Arts, Culture, Youth and Sports Ministry has been split into Tourism, Arts and Culture, and Youth and Sports. Both are headed by Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah.
Abang Johari said the new Cabinet line-up would emphasise port development, oil and gas activities, agriculture, urban transport and tourism.
"We have agreed that we must consolidate and implement policies that will drive our economy towards achieving the target of becoming a developed state by 2030.
"Our Cabinet has to be reshuffled to be in line with our objectives," he said.
Meanwhile, Abang Johari also announced that Datuk Jaul Samion is the new State Secretary effective Thursday (Aug 22), taking over from Tan Sri Morshidi Abdul Ghani.
Jaul had been serving as acting State Secretary since May when Morshidi went on extended leave prior to his retirement.