Zeti Akhtar Aziz, Ph.D.'78
Bank Negara Malaysia (Central Bank of Malaysia)

Wharton Speaker >> Biography

Dr. Zeti Akhtar Aziz was appointed Governor of Bank Negara Malaysia (The Central Bank of Malaysia) in May 2000. As the Governor, she has a key role in monetary policy formulation and implementation, and in ensuring the stability of the Malaysian financial system. In addition, she has overseen the successful transformation of the Malaysian financial system into one of the most developed and resilient financial systems amongst the emerging economies. In particular, she has been involved in leading the development of the Financial Sector Blueprint, which charts the direction of Malaysia’s financial sector development over the next 10 years; spearheading the development of Islamic finance, domestically and globally; and participating in efforts to enhance the contribution of SMEs to the Malaysian economy. Dr. Zeti is also actively involved in shaping the future of financial cooperation in the Asian region, and has been an important voice for the emerging economies in the international financial fora.

To strengthen regional integration, Dr. Zeti chaired the Executives' Meeting of East Asia-Pacific Central Banks (EMEAP) Taskforce on “Regional Cooperation among Central Banks in Asia” to draw up the blueprint for future financial cooperation in the region. She is also Co-chair of the Financial Stability Board's Regional Consultative Group for Asia, together with the Bank of Korea. Dr. Zeti is a member of the South East Asian Central Banks (SEACEN) Board of Governors and the Chairman of the SEACEN Board of Directors. She is also a member of the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) Central Bank Governance Group since 2001, and is one of the founding members of the BIS Asian Consultative Council.

In the area of Islamic finance, Dr. Zeti has been actively involved in its development, both in the domestic and international arena. Dr. Zeti served as the Islamic Financial Services Board (IFSB) Council Chairman for the 2007 term, and was also the Chairperson of the International Islamic Liquidity Management Corporation (IILM) Governing Board until 2011. Dr. Zeti is currently the Chairperson of the IILM's Board Executive Committee. She plays a leading role in developing Malaysia as a centre for the origination, distribution and trading of sukuk under the Malaysia International Islamic Financial Centre (MIFC) initiative. In 2002, Dr. Zeti led a team that launched the Malaysian Global Islamic Sukuk, the world’s first Islamic sukuk to be issued by a sovereign country.

Dr. Zeti had served as a member of the United Nations General Assembly Commission of Experts on Reform of the International Monetary and Financial System, a high-level task force established to examine possible reform of the global financial system.

Dr. Zeti received her Bachelor of Economics (Honors) from the University of Malaya and her PhD from the University of Pennsylvania.

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