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Lord Nicholas Borne and Chloe Smith appointed as NIO ministers

New Northern Ireland Office ministers Lord Nicholas Bourne and Chloe Smith with Secretary of State James Brokenshire (centre). Picture from NIO

A FORMER law professor and an ex-management consultant have been appointed as new Northern Ireland Office ministers.

Lord Nicholas Bourne, a former lecturer and ex-Welsh Conservative leader, was appointed as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, succeeding Kris Hopkins.

A member of the House of Lords since 2013, he previously served as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for the Department of Energy and Climate Change.

He was Professor of Law at Swansea Law School and taught law at Hong Kong University, the London School of Economics and at Cambridge University.

Chloe Smith (35), a Tory MP for Norwich North, was also appointed as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, replacing Lord Andrew Dunlop.

An English graduate who worked for international consultancy firm Deloitte, Ms Smith was first elected as an MP in 2009.

She was appointed Economic Secretary to the Treasury in October 2011, becoming the government's youngest minister.

However the Guardian reported that she was only given the role because then Prime Minister David Cameron wrongly believed she was a trained accountant.

Meanwhile, Owen Smith has been tipped to become shadow Secretary of State in a Labour reshuffle.

The Welsh MP, who unsuccessfully challenged Jeremy Corbyn for the Labour leadership last year, was a former special adviser in the NIO between 2002 and 2005.

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