Guinea's Conde names mining executive as new prime minister

Guinea's President Alpha Conde, leader of Rassemblement du Peuple de Guinea (RPG), attends the inauguration ceremony of the passenger harbor of Sandervalia in Conakry October 8, 2015. REUTERS/Luc Gnago/Files

CONAKRY (Reuters) - Guinea President Alpha Conde named mining executive Mamady Youla as prime minister on Saturday as part of a strategy to revive the West African nation’s ailing economy, the government announced.

Guinea is a major producer of bauxite, an aluminum ore, but growth has been hamstrung by a slump in metals prices and a two-year Ebola epidemic that killed more than 2,500 people and has driven away some investors.

Conde was re-elected to a second five-year term in a landslide victory in October, pledging to get Guineans back to work.

“The nomination of Mamady Youla, a senior Guinean executive in the private sector and administration, confirms President Alpha Conde’s new push to support job creation and training ... and reinforce Guinean businesses,” a government statement said.

From 2004 until his appointment as prime minister, Youla served as managing director of Guinea Alumina Corporation. GAC, which possesses a bauxite concession in Guinea’s Boke region, is a subsidiary of Emirates Global Aluminium, owned by Abu Dhabi investment fund Mubadala and Investment Corporation of Dubai.

Prime Minister Mohamed Said Fofana and his government resigned on Wednesday, following a tradition in which presidents typically change their cabinets following election.

The government statement said Youla was expected to name new ministers in the coming days.

Reporting by Saliou Samb; Writing by Joe Bavier; Editing by Dan Grebler