Greg Clark appointed business secretary as Sajid Javid gets demoted

Clark will head up BEIS - an apparent merger of the department of business, innovation and skills with the department of energy and climate change

Following prime minister Theresa May’s cabinet reshuffle today, Conservative MPs Greg Clark and Sajid Javid have been given new roles – in what would appear to be a direct switch up.

Clark has been appointed business secretary – what was Javid’s role – but has been given the title of secretary of state for business, energy and industrial strategy following a merger between the previous department of business, innovation and skills (DBIS) and the department of energy and climate change (DECC).

Former DBIS secretary Javid will now take Clark’s role as the secretary of state for the department of communities and local government. Javid was made DBIS secretary last May, when he took over the role from Vince Cable.

Little is known about what the merger of the DBIS and DECC means for organisations such as Innovate UK, the government-backed innovation agency, which has been a big part of DBIS’ activity and focus on innovation.

Yesterday, May appointed former foreign secretary Philip Hammond as the new chancellor of the exchequer and Hammond will now be responsible for the country’s economic and financial matters. May has also created a position following the Brexit result, secretary of state for exiting the European Union, which has been appointed to David Davis MP; a prominent ‘vote leave’ campaigner.

On his appointment, Clark commented:

“I am thrilled to have been appointed to lead this new department charged with delivering a comprehensive industrial strategy, leading government’s relationship with business, furthering our world-class science base, delivering affordable, clean energy and tackling climate change.”

Who is Greg Clark?

Born to a working class family in Middlesbrough, Clark has been a big advocate of the Northern Powerhouse and is seen to have genuine Northerner working class credentials.

Previously described as an “economically liberal Conservative with a social conscience”, Clark comes from a family of businessmen – both his father and grandfather were milkmen.

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