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Morocco names new acting finance minister

RABAT, Morocco (AP) -- Morocco's minister of agriculture has been appointed acting finance minister following the resignation of his predecessor.

Prime Minister Abdelilah Benkirane appointed Aziz Akhennouch to the position, the state news agency reported Friday. He replaces Nizar Baraka who had to resign when his party pulled out of the government coalition in July. Baraka stayed on until a replacement was announced.

Akhennouch, one of the wealthiest men in the country and owner of a major business conglomerate is considered a technocrat and was in the government before Islamists dominated the 2011 Arab Spring elections and formed a new ruling coalition.

On Wednesday, King Mohammed VI made Baraka head of the Social, Economic and Environmental Council, an advisory board of businessmen, union head and experts.