Johannesburg — Zambian President Edgar Lungu has named commerce minister Margaret Mwanakatwe as finance minister, replacing Felix Mutati in his biggest cabinet shuffle since winning the 2016 elections in Africa’s second-largest copper producer. Mutati becomes minister of works and supply, the presidency said in an e-mailed statement on Wednesday. Richard Musukwa replaces Christopher Yaluma as mines minister and Yaluma takes over as commerce minister. Mwanakatwe becomes finance minister as the country tries to secure a long-delayed loan deal with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), negotiations which Mutati had been driving. The change in leadership could prove pivotal for the planned $1.3bn loan after talks stalled last year, according to Chibamba Kanyama, a Lusaka-based independent economist who previously worked at the Washington-based lender as a communications advisor. "It’s either a deal breaker or a deal maker," he said by phone. "The next two weeks will determine how the I...

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