Bridge Forum CEO Summit
Heng Swee Keat
Luminaries and trailblazers past and present
Mr Heng Swee Keat is the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance for Singapore. The Ministry of Finance manages the national budget, oversees corporate governance regulations, and supervises the prudent investment and utilisation of public funds and government reserves. Mr Heng co-chaired the Committee on the Future Economy (CFE), which charted the strategies for Singapore’s next phase of growth. He chairs the tripartite Future Economy Council, which oversees the implementation of national strategies in areas such as skills and capabilities development, innovation and productivity, and industry transformation. He is also the Chairman of the National Research Foundation, which sets the direction for Singapore’s research, innovation and enterprise strategies.
Before this, Mr Heng served as Minister for Education from 2011 to 2015. He drove programmes for a student-centric, values-driven education system, emphasising the holistic development of students and multiple educational pathways. While at MOE, Mr Heng also led Our Singapore Conversation, a national consultation exercise that reached out to close to 50,000 Singaporeans on their aspirations for Singapore’s future. In 2015, he chaired the Singapore 50 (SG50) Steering Committee leading the celebrations for Singapore’s Golden Jubilee.
Prior to entering politics in May 2011, Mr Heng was the Managing Director of the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), where he received the “Central Bank Governor of the Year in Asia-Pacific” Award by the British magazine The Banker. He has served in various other public service positions, including appointments in the Singapore Police Force, as the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Trade and Industry, as the Chief Executive Officer of the Trade Development Board, and as the Principal Private Secretary to then-Senior Minister Lee Kuan Yew from 1997 to 2000. In 2001, Mr Heng was awarded the Gold Medal in Public Administration, and the Meritorious Medal in 2010 for his contribution to the public service in Singapore.
Mr Heng has an MA in Economics from Cambridge University. He also holds a Masters in Public Administration from the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.