British Prime Minister Liz Truss on Friday dismissed her finance minister, forcing Kwasi Kwarteng to carry the can for turmoil sparked by her right-wing economic platform as restive Conservatives plotted her own demise.
The chancellor of the exchequer was dismissed in person by Truss after he rushed back early from international meetings in Washington, and before she was due to hold her first Downing Street news conference
Former foreign secretary and former Tory leadership candidate Jeremy Hunt was appointed as Kwarteng’s replacement, making him Britain’s fourth finance minister this year.
“You have asked me to stand aside as your chancellor. I have accepted,” Kwarteng wrote in a letter to Truss, who only succeeded Boris Johnson on September 6.
But he insisted that their economic programme was needed because “the status quo was simply not an option”.
In reply, Truss wrote that Kwarteng had “put the national interest first”.
“I know that you will continue to support the mission that we share to deliver a low-tax, high-wage, high-growth economy that can transform the prosperity of our country for generations to come,” she said.
Financial upheaval sparked by the new government’s September 23 plan to slash taxes — financed via billions in more borrowing — has subsided somewhat since the Bank of England intervened in bond markets.