Blair reshuffles IT

The latest Westminster reshuffle has seen Alun Michael, previously the minister for rural affairs responsible for the fox-hunting ban, being given responsibility for e-commerce

Alun Michael has been named as the new minister responsible for e-commerce.

He replaces the previous e-minister, Mike O'Brien, who has moved to the role of Solicitor General.

A spokesman for the Department for Productivity, Energy and Industry — previously the Department of Trade and Industry — told ZDNet UK sister site silicon.com that ecommerce will come under Michael's role as minister for industry and the regions.

Michael was previously minister of state for rural affairs from 2001. He is best know for being responsible for steering the fox hunting legislation through parliament in the face of stiff opposition from the pro-hunt lobby.

He has been MP for Cardiff South and Penarth since 1987 and, before entering parliament, was a youth and community worker. He held his seat in the General Election earlier this month with 47 percent of the vote.

Before the election, industry group Intellect called on the Prime Minister to appoint an IT minister who would focus entirely on technology — a plea which appears to have been ignored.