January 20, 2011 / 5:21 PM / 9 years ago

UK's Labour appoints Ed Balls as finance spokesman

LONDON, Jan 20 (Reuters) - Britain’s opposition Labour party leader Ed Miliband said on Thursday he had appointed Ed Balls as its finance spokesman following the resignation of Alan Johnson.

Balls, a close ally of former prime minister Gordon Brown, lost out in a party leadership contest to Miliband last year only to then also miss out on what many had seen as his ideal position — finance minister George Osborne’s opposite number.

“It is with great regret that I have accepted the resignation of Alan Johnson,” Miliband said in a statement.

“Ed Balls is an outstanding economist and is hugely qualified to take our economic message to the country.” (Reporting by Matt Falloon; editing by Keith Weir)

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