Yoshihide Suga has officially replaced Shinzo Abe as Japan’s Prime Minister. Suga was elected as the new leader of the world’s third-largest economy on Wednesday following a vote in the Parliament.

On Monday, Yoshihide Suga was elected the leader of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) with about 70 percent of the votes. However, he still required the support of Japan’s national legislature, the Diet, before he could be declared as the new Prime Minister.

Suga is expected to announce his lineup of cabinet members before being sworn in on Wednesday afternoon by Emperor Naruhito at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo. His cabinet will include a huge number of appointees by former Prime Minister Abe, who announced his intention to step down in August due to health issues.

Suga is a former cardboard factory worker and farmer’s son. The new prime minister is also close to former Prime Minister Kazuto Suzuki, who once described Suga as an “Abe substitute.” Before he was elected on Wednesday, he had served as the right-hand man of Abe for almost eight years. Having been the chief cabinet secretary of Abe throughout his second term in office, Suga’s appointment as Abe’s successor did not come as a surprise.

Meanwhile, Suga is set to face significant challenges as he assumes office this week. While Japan has already brought the second wave of COVID-19 under control, the pandemic is still taking its toll on the country’s economy. Last month, Japan reported its worst decline in its GDP, with the local economy shrinking by 7.8 percent in the second quarter of 2020.

Suga is also expected to address calls for reforms for gender equality in the workplace—an issue that Abe failed to resolve during his term. It also remains unknown how Suga will address questions on whether the Summer Olympics will push through or not in 2021, considering the pandemic. Tokyo was originally set to hold the event this year but it was delayed due to COVID-19.

Meanwhile, Yoshihide Suga will face a referendum on his new government sooner than expected as Defense Minister Taro Kono said on Wednesday that snap elections could happen in October.

Yoshihide Suga Chief Cabinet Secretary, Yoshihide Suga speaks on stage during the Count Down Ceremony of the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games One Year To Go at the NHK Hall on August 25, 2019 in Tokyo, Japan. Photo by Matt Roberts/Getty Images