July 10, 2019 / 1:03 PM / 10 days ago

Mexico minister who resigned had differences with chief of staff -president

FILE PHOTO: Mexico's Finance Minister Carlos Urzua listens as President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (not pictured) speaks to the media during a news conference to announce a plan to strengthen finances of state oil firm Pemex, at the National Palace in Mexico City, Mexico February 15, 2019. REUTERS/Henry Romero /File Photo

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said on Wednesday that former Finance Minister Carlos Urzua, who resigned on Tuesday, had differences with the president’s chief of staff and businessman Alfonso Romo, among other issues.

In Urzua’s resignation letter, he cited problems with other members of the government as one reason for leaving. He also referred to “extremism” in economic policy and conflicts of interest in the appointment of some ministry officials imposed on him by influential members of the government.

Lopez Obrador tried to downplay Urzua’s resignation, saying it was normal for there to be differences within a government that was pushing big changes in the economy and that other resignations were possible.

In a video message on Tuesday, Lopez Obrador said Urzua was not comfortable with the decisions being taken to upend what the president frequently calls the neoliberal era in Mexico, starting in the 1980s.

Following Urzua’s resignation, Lopez Obrador quickly named well-regarded deputy finance minister, Arturo Herrera, to replace him.

Reporting by Anthony Esposito; Writing by Rebekah F Ward; Editing by Bernadette Baum

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