(Corrects prime minister's name in lead)
* Appointment expected to unlock World Bank loans
* Kolo, a medical doctor, appointed after long consultations
* Madagascar hopes to lure back tourists, foreign investors
By Lovasoa Rabary
ANTANANARIVO, April 11 Madagascar named Kolo
Christophe Laurent Roger, a radiologist who lived abroad for
decades, as its new prime minister on Friday, as part of a
process aimed at ending prolonged political turmoil on the
Indian Ocean island.
Kolo, 70, faces a big challenge reviving the mineral-rich
island's economy, which has slumped since a 2009 military coup.
President Hery Rajaonarimampianina, who took office in
January, has pledged to woo foreign investors and tourists to
Madagascar, which is famed for its exotic wildlife and also
boasts nickel, cobalt, coal, iron ore and uranium deposits.
"(Roger Kolo) was proposed by 12 parties with 93 members
(backing him). The majority required by the constitution was
easily exceeded," Rajaonarimampianina told a news conference
announcing the choice.
"If I took so much time to name him, it's because I listened
to many parties," he added.
In Madagascar, the president wields most power, while the
prime minister's job is to run day-to-day affairs of government
and to implement the president's policies and orders.
However, the World Bank has said its resumption of normal
lending would hinge on the appointment of a new prime minister.
The International Monetary Fund restored ties with
Madagascar in March. External financing made up 40 percent of
the island's budget until donors withdrew aid after rebel troops
led by former disc jockey Andry Rajoelina seized power in 2009.
Rajoelina has been at the heart of a power struggle that
stoked five years of turmoil in the island nation. He was barred
from standing in December's presidential election under the
terms of a peace deal brokered by regional African states.
Kolo, who returned to Madagascar last year after spending
more than 30 years abroad and who ran a radiology practice in
Switzerland, was barred from contesting the presidential
election because of residency rules.
Rajoelina ruled out seeking the post of prime minister for
himself in February, a decision that was seen easing political
divisions that had driven away investors and hurt the economy.
(Reporting by Lovasoa Rabary; Writing by George Obulutsa)