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Peru’s 35-Year-Old Finance Minister Is Suddenly a Rock Star

  • People stop her on the street for selfies and to present gifts
  • She’s overseeing an ambitious virus recovery package
Maria Antonieta Alva

Maria Antonieta Alva

Photographer: Miguel Yovera/Bloomberg

Everyone calls her Toni. Mothers take selfies of her with their children, and street hawkers push bracelets into her hand as presents. Artists sketch her portrait and post them to social media. TV networks vie for interviews and run profiles asking, “Who is Maria Antonieta Alva?”

The answer: She’s the 35-year-old finance minister of Peru steering an ambitious recovery package during a devastating pandemic, and she is winning praise for its generosity to small businesses and ordinary citizens.