Japan’s parliament has elected Yoshihide Suga as the country’s new prime minister. He will be the country’s first premier in nearly eight years.
Suga, 71, Abe’s longtime right-hand man, has pledged to pursue many of Abe’s programs, including his signature “Abenomics” economic strategy, and to forge ahead with structural reforms, including deregulation and streamlining bureaucracy.
Suga won an easy victory taking 314 votes out of 462 valid ballots cast in the lower house of parliament.
His win was widely expected as the coalition headed by his conservative Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) holds the majority in the house.
Suga will later be ceremonially endorsed by the emperor at the Imperial Palace.
His predecessor Shinzo Abe, Japan’s longest-serving premier, resigned due to ill health after nearly eight years in office.