Azmin Ali was born on 25 August 1964 in Singapore (then a state of Malaysia). In 1968, his parents, Haji Ali and Hajjah Che Tom Yahaya, and the entire family migrated and moved to Kampung Gate Baru, Hulu Kelang, Selangor. From 1971-1976, Azmin received his early education at Sekolah Gurney Road (2), Kuala Lumpur. From 1977 – 1979, Azmin received his secondary education at Sekolah Menengah Setapak, Kuala Lumpur. He then went to Technical Institute of Kuala Lumpur, Jalan Cheras, Kuala Lumpur from 1980 – 1981. In 1982, he furthered his studies abroad and attended The University of Minnesota in the United States of America where he studied and received a BSc in Economics and Mathematics. He later completed his Master’s degree in Education (Mathematics and Economics) in the same university.
Azmin Ali met Shamsida, his future wife, at the same university. They subsequently got married on 7 August 1988. Azmin and Shamsida have 6 children.
Upon returning to Malaysia, Azmin Ali began his career as a teacher at Maktab Rendah Sains MARA Terendak in Malacca. In 1987, Azmin was appointed as a Special Officer to the then Education Minister Dato’ Seri Anwar Ibrahim. He then became the Private Secretary to the Education Minister in 1989. He continued being the Private Secretary to Dato’ Seri Anwar Ibrahim when Anwar became the Finance Minister in 1991 and Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister in 1993.
There was a shift in Azmin’s career when Anwar Ibrahim was sacked in 1998 and this became the starting point of his involvement in the political world. On 12 September 1998, the ‘Permatang Pauh Declaration’ was proclaimed. The move triggered a wave of reforms in Malaysia. Azmin Ali coordinated the reformation movement through peaceful rallies in Kuala Lumpur and several other places throughout the country. In September 1998 Azmin Ali was also arrested by the police.
Together with fellow supporters of the reformation movement, Azmin Ali founded ‘People’s Justice Party’ (Parti Keadilan Rakyat or PKR) in 1999. He contested and won the Hulu Klang seat in the Selangor State Assembly at the 10th General Election in 1999. In the 12th General Election, Azmin Ali won the Gombak Parliamentary seat and the Bukit Antarabangsa seat in the Selangor State Assembly. He retains both of these seats to this very day.
Azmin was appointed Vice President of PKR in 2001 and was re-elected in the same position in December 2004 and May 2007. In 2010, PKR’s National Congress elected Azmin as Deputy President and he continued to hold the post until he was sacked from PKR on 24 February 2020. Azmin Ali then announced his decision, and his team’s decision, to join Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (BERSATU) in August 2020 at the National Congress 2020.
In the 10th General Election, which was held on 29 November 1999, Azmin was elected as the assemblyman for Hulu Klang. However, in the 11th General Election in 2004, he was disqualified to contest for any seats in Parliament and State Assembly. He was elected again in the 12th General Election in 2008 by defeating Barisan Nasional’s candidate Said Anuar Said Ahmad with a majority of 6,867 votes. He received 40,334 votes compared to his opponent who received 33,467 votes. Azmin also won the Bukit Antarabangsa seat in the Selangor State Assembly during this term.
Azmin Ali successfully maintained both seats for Parliament of Gombak and Bukit Antarabangsa seat in the Selangor State Assembly in the 13th General Election in 2013 and in the 14th General Election in 2018.
Azmin was appointed as Chief Minister of Selangor on the 23rd of September 2014. He replaced Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim. During Azmin’s tenure as Chief Minister, Selangor became more prominent and continued to maintain its status as the biggest economic contributor to the country’s GDP. By implementing policies geared to provide support in health, housing and education, Azmin launched a 10 year strategic plan to make Selangor a ‘smart state’ in the region.
After Pakatan Harapan won the 2018 General Election, Azmin was made the Minister of Economic Affairs in Tun Mahathir Mohamad’s cabinet. The Ministry of Economic Affairs was a newly established ministry and Azmin was the first minister to head it. He was sworn in as a Minister of Economic Affairs on the 21st of May 2018 at the National Palace (Istana Negara), Kuala Lumpur.
During his tenure as Minister of Economic Affairs, Azmin played an important role in setting the direction and implementation of Shared Prosperity Vision 2030. He led various agencies including those involved in infrastructure, wealth creation and distribution, and private equity ownership and planning. He was also involved in the execution of short and medium term economic implementations which were created for the purpose of socio-economic development of the country – domestically and regionally.
Azmin is a member of the Economic Action Council (EAC), chaired by the Prime Minister. Azmin is also a board member of Khazanah Nasional Berhad, the sovereign wealth fund of Malaysia.
Azmin Ali is currently holding the position of Senior Minister and Minister of International Trade and Industry (MITI) in Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin’s cabinet. MITI is tasked to position Malaysia as a globally competitive trading country, as well as a major destination of choice for investors. There are 14 important agencies placed under MITI including Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA), Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE), Malaysia Productivity Corporation (MPC) and SIRIM Berhad, and they are responsible to strengthen international trade and industry.
At the ASEAN 2020 Meeting, Azmin represented Malaysia and signed the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) with 14 other countries, virtually. RCEP is globally the largest Free Trade Agreement representing a third (⅓) of the world’s population.
In 2020, Azmin together with the MITI team successfully held the APEC Summit virtually – a first in history. With the consensus reached through the APEC Economic Leaders Meeting, APEC finalised the Putrajaya 2040 Vision as the new vision that will determine the future direction of the region.
Early Life / Career / Political Career / ..