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Czech parties agree govt posts, Kalousek at finance

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Czech parties negotiating the formation of a centre-right government agreed on the division of key cabinet posts on Wednesday, including the appointment of austerity advocate Miroslav Kalousek as finance minister. The agreement is a big step forward in new PM Petr Nečas’s drive to form a strong government capable of slashing the budget deficit and launching pension and social policy reforms that have been hampered in the past by weak parliamentary majorities.

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