Heng Swee Keat

The Honourable
Heng Swee Keat

Heng Swee Kiat at Nan Hua High School in July 2012
Minister for Finance
Assumed office
22 August 2016
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong
Deputy Lawrence Wong
Preceded by Tharman Shanmugaratnam
In office
1 October 2015  12 May 2016
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong
Preceded by Tharman Shanmugaratnam
Succeeded by Tharman Shanmugaratnam
Minister for Education
In office
21 May 2011  30 September 2015
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong
Preceded by Ng Eng Hen
Succeeded by Ng Chee Meng (Acting Schools Minister)
Ong Ye Kung (Acting Higher Education and Skills Minister)
Managing Director of the Monetary Authority of Singapore
In office
1 June 2005  2 April 2011
Preceded by Koh Yong Guan
Succeeded by Ravi Menon
Member of Parliament
for Tampines GRC
Assumed office
9 May 2011
Preceded by Sin Boon Ann
Majority 18,347 (14.4%)
Personal details
Born (1961-11-01) 1 November 1961
Political party People's Action Party
Alma mater Raffles Institution
University of Cambridge
Harvard University
This is a Chinese name; the family name is Heng (Chinese: ; pinyin: Wáng).

Heng Swee Keat (Chinese: 王瑞杰; pinyin: Wáng Ruì Jié, born 1 November 1961) is a Singaporean politician. A member of the country's governing People's Action Party (PAP), he has been in the Cabinet serving as the Minister for Finance since October 2015. He was previously the Minister for Education from May 2011 to September 2015. He has been a member of parliament (MP) representing the Tampines Group Representation Constituency (Tampines GRC) since the 2011 general election.[1]

Prior to his election to Parliament, Heng served as the managing director of the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) from 2005 to 2011.


In 1983, Heng began his career in the Singapore Police Force where he was awarded the SPF Overseas Scholarship from then President Devan Nair.[2] In 1997, he then joined the Singapore Civil Service's Administrative Service. He served a period at the Ministry of Education, before being appointed the Principal Private Secretary to former Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew (who was then Senior Minister) in 1997. In 2001, Heng became the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Trade and Industry.[3] He then served as managing director of the Monetary Authority of Singapore from 2005 to 2011.[4]

In February 2011, Heng was named the Asia-Pacific Central Bank Governor of the Year by the British magazine The Banker.[5]

At the 2011 general election, Heng was a People's Action Party (PAP) candidate in the Tampines Group Representation Constituency (Tampines GRC). When he was introduced as a candidate, former Prime Minister (and Emeritus Senior Minister) Goh Chok Tong tipped Heng to be a potential minister and core member of Singapore's fourth generation leadership team.[6] Heng was one of five PAP candidates in his constituency in a team led by Minister for National Development Mah Bow Tan, which also included Irene Ng, Zulkifli Masagos and Baey Yam Keng. They faced a team from the National Solidarity Party (NSP), led by the party's Secretary General Goh Meng Seng, along with Reno Fong, Syafarin Sarif, Raymond Lim and Gilbert Goh. On polling day, 7 May 2011, the PAP team won the contest with 57.22% of the votes.[7] (This represented a drop of 11.29% from the PAP's percentage of the votes in the constituency at the 2006 general election.)[8]

On 18 May 2011, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong appointed Heng to the Cabinet as the Minister for Education.

In August 2012, Heng was tasked to lead a new ministerial committee to conduct a broad-based review of the Government's policies and direction.[9]

On 28 September 2015, it was announced that Heng will be the Minister of Finance from 1 October 2015.[10]


On 12 May 2016, Heng Swee Keat collapsed from a stroke during a Cabinet meeting. He was taken to Tan Tock Seng Hospital, where he underwent neurosurgery to relieve pressure in his brain. He was transferred to the ICU after the surgery.[11] Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam, was immediately appointed to cover Mr Heng's duties. Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong visited Mr Heng at the hospital and wrote on Facebook that he hope "[Mr Heng] Swee Keat will have a full and smooth recovery."[12]

Mr S. Iswaran, Minister for Trade and Industry (Industry), was appointed co-chairman of the Committee on the Future Economy.

The four other Tampines GRC MPs will take turns to visit constituents in Mr Heng's Tampines Central ward, and attend to their needs at his Meet-the-People Sessions on Mondays. They will be helped by former Tampines GRC MP Sin Boon Ann, who has been appointed deputy chairman of the People's Action Party branch in Tampines Central.

On 30 May 2016, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong disclosed in an update at night on his Facebook page that he visited Mr Heng in the evening at Tan Tock Seng Hospital Neurology Intensive Care Unit—National Neuroscience Institute. He noted that Mr Heng was recovering well and made steady progress, describing him as fully lucid, communicative and cheerful. In addition, Mr Lee was told that the doctors had advised Mr Heng not to receive visitors just yet, so that he could get as much rest as possible. Mr Heng conveyed his thanks to those who had sent him get-well wishes. He especially sends his greetings and best wishes to Tampines residents and volunteers, who have been asking after him.

On 25 June 2016, Heng Swee Keat was discharged from hospital after 6 weeks. The Prime Minister's Office said on a statement that Mr Heng "has made an excellent recovery", but is still on medical leave as he continues his rehabilitation. For his grassroots events while Mr Heng is absent, the former MP for Tampines GRC Mr Sin Boon Ann stood in for him to serve residents at his Tampines Central Ward. Mr Sin was an MP for Tampines GRC between 1997 and 2011.He resumed his duties as MP and Finance Minister on 22 August 2016 and his colleague Mr Lawrence Wong the Minister for National Development was appointed as Second Finance Minister.


In 1983, Heng graduated with a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) degree in Economics from Cambridge University. Heng holds a Master of Arts in economics from the University of Cambridge.[13]

In 1993, Heng obtained a Master of Public Administration from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.[14]

He completed his pre-university education at Raffles Institution.

Notable appointments

Notable awards


  1. Parliamentary Elections Act (Chapter 218) [candidates declared to have been elected Members of Parliament at the 2011 general election] (G.N. No. 1229/2011)
  2. http://www.mha.gov.sg/news_details.aspx?nid=Nzk3-uw4ySnZavTA%3D
  3. Minister for Education Mr HENG Swee Keat, Cabinet of Singapore, 12 June 2012, archived from the original on 7 December 2013
  4. "MAS chief Heng Swee Keat steps down", The Straits Times, 31 March 2011
  5. "MAS chief named top central bank governor for Asia-Pacific", The Straits Times, 12 February 2011
  6. "Heng Swee Keat has 'potential to be Minister'", The Straits Times, 2 April 2011
  7. 2011 Parliamentary Election Results, Elections Department, 8 October 2013, archived from the original on 6 March 2014
  8. 2006 Parliamentary Election Results, Elections Department, 8 October 2013
  9. "National conversation on common future welcomed: Goh Chok Tong", The Straits Times, 12 August 2012
  10. "Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong announces Singapore's new Cabinet". Channel NewsAsia. 28 September 2015. Retrieved 28 September 2015.
  11. "Heng Swee Keat out of surgery; in ICU after stroke". Channel NewsAsia. Retrieved 13 May 2016.
  12. "Heng Swee Keat in stable condition: PM Lee". Channel NewsAsia. 13 May 2016. Retrieved 13 May 2016.
  13. http://app.psd.gov.sg/data/Press%20Release%20-%20Snr%20Appt%20Changes%20(21%20Feb).doc
  14. http://app.psd.gov.sg/data/Press%20Release%20-%20Snr%20Appt%20Changes%20(21%20Feb).doc

External links

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Heng Swee Keat.
Government offices
Preceded by
Koh Yong Guan
managing director of the Monetary Authority of Singapore
Succeeded by
Ravi Menon
Political offices
Preceded by
Ng Eng Hen
Minister for Education
Succeeded by
Ng Chee Meng (Acting Schools Minister)
Ong Ye Kung (Acting Higher Education and Skills Minister)
Preceded by
Tharman Shanmugaratnam
Minister for Finance
Parliament of Singapore
Preceded by
Sin Boon Ann
Member of Parliament for Tampines GRC
This article is issued from Wikipedia - version of the 11/26/2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.