New UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak Vows to Fix Predecessor’s ‘Mistakes,’ Ensure Stability

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Britain’s new Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has vowed to fix the “mistakes” by his predecessor Liz Truss and to rebuild economic stability and confidence.

Sunak, 42, became the youngest prime minister for more than 200 years after being appointed by King Charles III at the Buckingham Palace on Oct. 25.

Speaking on the steps of Downing Street, the new prime minister said the UK is facing a “profound economic crisis” caused by the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic and the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Epoch Times Photo
King Charles III welcomes Rishi Sunak during an audience at Buckingham Palace, where he invited the newly elected leader of the Conservative Party to become prime minister and form a new government, in London, on Oct. 25, 2022. (Aaron Chown – WPA Pool/Getty Images)

Sunak paid tribute to his predecessor—who was forced to step down after her plan to fund tax cuts with government borrowing caused turmoil in the financial markets—saying she was “not wrong” to want to deliver economic growth.

But he said “mistakes” had been made in her attempt to do so, and he had been elected Conservative Party leader and prime minister “in part to fix them.”

‘Not Daunted’

Sunak suggested his government will make “difficult decisions” to drive down government debt.

“I will place economic stability and confidence at the heart of this government’s agenda. This will mean difficult decisions to come,” he said.

“The government I lead will not leave the next generation, your children and grandchildren, with a debt to settle that we were too weak to pay ourselves,” he added.

Sunak pledged that his government will have “integrity, professionalism, and accountability at every level” and he vowed to earn the trust of the British public.

He said he is “not daunted” by the task ahead as he stands “ready to lead our country into the future.”

“I fully appreciate how hard things are and I understand too that I have work to do to restore trust after all that has happened,” he said. “All I can say is that I am not daunted. I know the high office I have accepted and I hope to live up to its demands.”

Meteoric Rise

Sunak was born in Southampton in 1980 to Punjabi parents. His father was a family doctor and his mother ran a pharmacy, where he helped her with the books.

After private schooling at Winchester College and a degree in philosophy, politics, and economics (PPE) at Oxford, he took an MBA at Stanford University in California where he met his wife, Akshata Murty, the daughter of India’s sixth richest man.

Epoch Times Photo
Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak alongside his wife Akshata Murty attend a reception to celebrate the British Asian Trust at the British Museum in London on Feb. 9, 2022. (Ian West/PA Media)

A successful business career, with spells at Goldman Sachs and as a hedge fund manager, meant by the time he decided to enter politics in his early 30s he was already independently wealthy.

In 2014 he was selected as the Tory candidate for the ultra-safe seat of Richmond in North Yorkshire and was duly elected in the general election the following year.

He served as a junior local government minister under Theresa May, and was promoted to treasury chief secretary by Boris Johnson.

He became chancellor of the Exchequer at the age of just 39 in February 2020, when his predecessor Sajid Javid resigned.

It has taken Sunak only seven years to go from being a new MP to becoming the new prime minister. No other British politician in modern times has made the same journey in a shorter period.

PA Media contributed to this report.

Alexander Zhang

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