South West Surrey MP Jeremy Hunt has been appointed chancellor of the exchequer in the wake of Kwasi Kwarteng’s sacking on Friday.

It represents a return to the Conservative Party front bench for Mr Hunt, and is his first cabinet posting since running against Boris Johnson in the 2019 Tory leadership election.

Mr Hunt – whose appointment has been approved by King Charles III – will be the fourth chancellor this year, and he takes over during a period of economic turmoil in the UK.

He has previously held the positions of both health and foreign secretary.

Mr Hunt again put himself forward to be the next Tory leader during the latest leadership contest this summer. But after failing to gain enough support from fellow MPs he supported Liz Truss rival Rishi Sunak’s bid.

Despite that, just weeks into her premiership Ms Truss has handed Mr Hunt the second highest-ranking appointment in Number 10.

The overhaul comes in the wake of damning criticism of the Government’s mini-budget, with Chris Phelp also making way as chief secretary to the treasury to be replaced by Ed Argar.

Mr Kwarteng now holds the distinction of being the shortest-serving chancellor in history, being in the role for just 38 days.

However, the prime minister paid tribute to Mr Kwarteng and implied he resigned rather than being sacked.

In a press conference, Ms Truss said she was “incredibly sorry” to lose Mr Kwarteng as chancellor – paying tribute to a “great friend”.

But she added she had acted “decisively” because her priority was to act in the national interest.

She said Mr Hunt “shares my vision” to “go for growth”, and hailed his experience as a minister.

Mr Hunt will deliver the medium-term fiscal plan at the end of the month, she said.