Mathias cormann
Top right photo by Adrian Petty, European Central Bank

Mathias Cormann is Australia’s longest-serving Finance Minister and the Leader of the Australian Government in the Senate. An experienced political leader  with strong economic credentials, Mathias has delivered Australia’s annual Federal Budgets since 2013. In this role, he has led complex negotiations with a broad  spectrum of political parties. 

Born in Belgium, Mathias Cormann migrated to Australia in 1996. Mathias would bring a distinctive perspective to the Secretary-General role, having spent  half of his life in Europe and half in the Asia-Pacific. His experience gives him rare insights into the cultures, economic strengths and political dynamics of both  regions.

Mathias is a strong advocate of global economic governance. He has represented Australia in the OECD, G20, APEC, ASEAN and the World Economic Forum. In 2018, Mathias was awarded the Grand Cross with Star and Sash of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany, for his work in advancing German-Australian relations. 

From August 2018 to May 2019, Mathias served as Minister for the Public Service.  In this role, he led initiatives to modernise and reform Australia’s public sector,  with a focus on achieving higher levels of transparency, efficiency and good governance. 

Mathias is married to Hayley and they have two young daughters, Isabelle and Charlotte.

Current roles

  • Australian Minister for Finance since 2013
  • Leader of the Australian Government in the Senate since 2017
  • Chair of the National Security Investment Committee
  • Member of the Expenditure Review Committee and the National Security Committee of Cabinet
  • Vice-President of the Federal Executive Council of Australia since 2017
  • Senator for Western Australia since 2007

Previous professional experience

2018-2019 Australian Minister for the Public Service
2010-2011 Chair of the Senate Select Committee on Scrutiny of New Taxes
2008-2010 Chair of the Senate Select Committee on Fuel and Energy
2006-2007 Acting General Manager, HBF Health Insurance
2004-2006 General Manager, HealthGuard
2003-2004 Health Services Manager, HBF Health Insurance


LLC, Notre Dame University de Namur, Belgium

LLL, Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium

Mathias grew up speaking German and graduated in law after studies in French, Flemish & English.