Lawrence Gonzi

Prime Minister, Malta 2004-13
Minister of Finance, 2004-08
Minister of Social Policy, 1998-2004

 
Select Country to view GLF Members
Close Map
Global Map Algeria Armenia Australia Austria Botswana Canada Chile Côte d'Ivoire Egypt Finland Guatemala India Indonesia Jamaica Jordan Latvia Lebanon Malta Mauritius New Zealand Peru Philipines Senegal South Africa Spain Sri Lanka Sweden Switzerland Tanzania Timor-Leste Turkey USA USA United Kingdom Uruguay
View GLF Members Map
Algeria
Back to Map

Lakhdar Brahimi

Foreign Minister, Algeria 1991-93
UN Special Adviser to the Secretary-General 2004-05

     
BIO      
 
Armenia
Back to Map

Armen Sarkissian

Prime Minister, Armenia 1996-97

     
BIO      
 
Australia
Back to Map

Kevin Rudd

Prime Minister of Australia, 2007-2010 and 2013
Foreign Minister,  2010-2012

Gareth Evans

Foreign Minister, Australia 1988-96
President and CEO of the International Crisis Group 2000-09

   
BIO BIO    
 
Austria
Back to Map

Wolfgang Schüssel

Austria, Federal Chancellor 2000 – 2007
Foreign Minister 1995 - 2000

     
BIO      
 
Botswana
Back to Map

Sir Ketumile Masire

President, Republic of Botswana 1980-1998

     
BIO      
 
Canada
Back to Map

Joe Clark

Prime Minister, Canada 1979-80
Secretary of State for External Affairs 1984-1991

Louise Fréchette

UN Deputy Secretary-General, 1998 – 2006

   
BIO BIO    
 
Chile
Back to Map

Juan Gabriel Valdés

Minister for Foreign Affairs, Chile, 1999
Chilean Ambassador to the UN, 2000-03

     
BIO      
 
Côte d'Ivoire
Back to Map

Amara Essy

Foreign Minister, Côte d'Ivoire 1990-2000
Secretary General, OAU 2001
Chairman, AU Commission 2002-3

     
BIO      
 
Egypt
Back to Map

Mohamed ElBaradei

Director General,  International Atomic Energy Agency 1997-2009
Interim Vice President, Egypt 2013

     
BIO      
 
Finland
Back to Map

Elisabeth Rehn

UN Under-Secretary-General, SRSG in Bosnia and Herzegovina 1998-99
UN Special Rapporteur for Human Rights 1995-97
Finnish Minister of Defence 1990-95 and Equality Affairs 1991-95

     
BIO      
 
Guatemala
Back to Map

Eduardo Stein

Vice President, Guatemala, 2004-08
Foreign Minister 1996-2000

     
BIO      
 
India
Back to Map

Jaswant Singh

Foreign Minister, India 1998-2002
Defence Minister, India 2001
Finance Minister, India 1996, 2002-04

     
BIO      
 
Indonesia
Back to Map

Marzuki Darusman

Attorney General, Indonesia 1999 to 2001

     
BIO      
 
Jamaica
Back to Map

P.J.Patterson

Prime Minister, Jamaica 1992-2006

     
BIO      
 
Jordan
Back to Map

His Royal Highness Prince El Hassan bin Talal

Crown Prince of Jordan 1965 - 99

     
BIO      
 
Latvia
Back to Map

Vaira Vike-Freiberga

President of Latvia, 1999 – 2007

     
BIO      
 
Lebanon
Back to Map

Ghassan Salamé

UN Special Advisor to Secretary-General, 2003-06
Lebanese Minister of Culture, 2000-03

     
BIO      
 
Malta
Back to Map

Lawrence Gonzi

Prime Minister, Malta 2004-13
Minister of Finance, 2004-08
Minister of Social Policy, 1998-2004

     
BIO      
 
Mauritius
Back to Map

Cassam Uteem

President, Mauritius 1992-2002

     
BIO      
 
Mexico
Back to Map

Vicente Fox

President, Mexico, 2000-06

     
BIO      
 
New Zealand
Back to Map

Mike Moore

Prime Minister of New Zealand 1990
Director General of the World Trade Organisation 1999-2002

     
BIO      
 
Spain
Back to Map

Javier Solana

Secretary General, Council of the European Union 1999-2009
Secretary General, NATO 1995-1999
Foreign Minister, Spain 1992-1995

     
BIO      
 
Sri Lanka
Back to Map

Chandrika Kumaratunga

President, Sri Lanka 1994-2005

     
BIO      
 
Philipines
Back to Map

Fidel Ramos

President, Republic of the Philippines 1992-98

     
BIO      
 
Peru
Back to Map

Alvaro de Soto

UN Under-Secretary-General 1999-2007

     
BIO      
 
Sweden
Back to Map

Carl Bildt

Prime Minister, Sweden 1991-94
Foreign Minister 2006-14
UN Special Envoy to the Balkans 1999-2001

     
BIO      
 
Switzerland
Back to Map

Micheline Calmy-Rey

President of the Swiss Confederation 2007 and 2011

Pascal Couchepin

President, Swiss Confederation 2003 & 2008

Kaspar Villiger

President, Swiss Confederation 1995 & 2002

 
BIO BIO BIO  
 
Senegal
Back to Map

Moustapha Niasse

Prime Minister of Senegal 1983 & 2000-01

     
BIO      
 
South Africa
Back to Map

F.W. de Klerk

President, Republic of South Africa 1989-94

     
BIO      
 
Tanzania
Back to Map

Salim Salim

Prime Minister of Tanzania, 1984 – 1985
Secretary-General of the OAU, 1989 – 2001

     
BIO      
 
Timor-Leste
Back to Map

José Ramos-Horta

President, Timor-Leste 2007-12

Prime Minister 2006-07

     
BIO      
 
Turkey
Back to Map

Hikmet Çetin

Deputy Prime Minister, Turkey, 1978-79 and 1995
Foreign Minister, 1991-94

     
BIO      
 
USA
Back to Map

Chester A. Crocker

US Assistant Secretary for African Affairs 1981-89

Tom Daschle

US Senator 1987-2005
Member of the US House of Representatives 1979-1987
Majority Leader of the US Senate

Donald F. McHenry

US Ambassador to the UN 1979-81

Thomas R. Pickering

US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs 1997-2000
US Ambassador to the UN 1989-92

BIO BIO BIO BIO
 
United Kingdom
Back to Map

Catherine Ashton

Catherine Ashton

High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy 2009-14
Vice President of the European Commission 2009-14

Lynda Chalker

Minister of Overseas Development, UK 1989-97

   
BIO BIO    
 
Uruguay
Back to Map

Enrique Iglesias

Foreign Minister, Uruguay, 1985-1988
President of the Inter-American Development Bank 1988-2005

     
BIO      
 

Lawrence Gonzi - Biographical Information
 

Prime Minister, Malta 2004-13
Minister of Finance, 2004-08
Minister of Social Policy, 1998-2004

 

Lawrence Gonzi was Prime Minister of Malta for nine years (2004-2013) while retaining the portfolio of Minister of Finance for the first four years of his tenure (2004-2008).   

Gonzi also served as Speaker of the House from 1988 to 1996, Minister of Social Policy from 1998 to 2004, as well as Deputy Prime Minister from 1999 to 2004.  In Parliament, he was both Leader of the House and Leader of the Opposition.

Public career

Having studied at the University of Malta, Lawrence Gonzi practised law with a private firm, the Mizzi Organisation, where he served as Group Chairman between 1989 and 1997. Throughout his legal career he specialised in commercial law, maritime law, and employment and industrial relations.  

The political and religious turmoil in Malta during the 1980s moved him to get involved in local politics. After unsuccessfully contesting the 1987 general election with the Nationalist Party, Gonzi was appointed Speaker of the House of Representatives on October 1988.    During his two terms as Speaker he overhauled the methods by which Parliament operated, including setting up permanent committees and introducing new procedures with regards to government accountability and transparency in a parliamentary democracy.

In October 1996 Gonzi was elected to Parliament where he also served as Whip for the Opposition. In 1997 he was elected Secretary General of the Nationalist Party which went on to win the 1998 elections after which he was appointed Minister for Social Policy, Leader of the House of Representatives and Deputy Prime Minister – positons he held until 2004.

As Minister for Social Policy, Gonzi was the driving force behind many social and economic reforms. In the run-up to Malta's accession to the European Union the need to overhaul industrial relations legislation became pressing and Gonzi drafted and piloted the Employment and Industrial Relations Act (2002). He was also instrumental in setting up the framework for the Malta Council for Economic and Social Development, enabling social partners to have a functional forum where they could meet to make recommendations on social and economic matters. These employment and industrial relations reforms were applied to the restructuring of the Malta shipyards, and the introduction of a stringent zero-tolerance policy for benefit fraud.

In 2004 Gonzi became leader of the National Party and appointed Prime Minister and Minister of Finance just months before Malta joined the European Union in May 2004. 

As Prime Minister and Minister of Finance he successfully managed the process to achieve the Maastricht convergence criteria, allowing Malta to join the Eurozone on January 1, 2008. He embarked upon a drive to improve the management of public finances, focused sharply upon improving Malta’s competitiveness in the international market and accelerated the restructuring process of the public sector while stressing the need for sustainable development and environmental stewardship on the islands, as well as strengthening the education and healthcare sectors. Gonzi stressed the importance of  attracting high-value-added sectors of the economy, particularly information technology, biotechnology and pharmaceuticals.  He pushed for the privatisation of the Malta shipyards and for reform of the pension system, to guarantee their future sustainability.  Despite the cost to his party and personal popularity, he continued to push through these reforms, making Malta an attractive location for foreign direct investment in financial services, information technology, maritime and aviation hubs and manufacturing clusters.   He also succeeded in securing for Malta €2.4 billion in EU funds from 2007 onwards, and achieving a voluntary EU burden-sharing agreement on illegal migration.     

Re-elected in 2008, Gonzi's second government focused on the repercussions of the economic and financial crisis of 2008-11, the market volatility caused by the price of oil reaching record high levels and the Arab Spring especially the Libya crisis.  During this period his cabinet initiated various projects, such as SmartCity Malta and an architectural showcase project in Valletta.  Financial aid and support were provided to local industries and investment continued unimpeded, keeping unemployment low in the country. Guarantees were also provided to public-sector companies giving them time to restructure and achieve financial viability.  As a result Malta experienced consistent economic growth and stable employment levels which exceeded EU averages notwithstanding the economic turmoil which, during this period, was predominant in the global economies including the Eurozone.

Activity after public politics

Lawrence Gonzi is very active in the voluntary sector, particularly in areas relating to disability and mental health issues.   He was the first chairman of the Kummissjoni Nazzjonali Persuni b’ Diżabilità, a national commission for persons with disability, and also served as general president of the Malta Catholic Action Movement between 1976 and 1986.

In 2013 he led the Commonwealth Observer Group for the Maldivian presidential election.  He has given lectures at a number of universities and various conferences and in 2014 published “Gonzi & Malta’s Break with Gaddafi – Recollection of a Premier“.

Membership and Associations

  • Board Member of the Fondazione Centesimus Annus
  • Member of the Honorary Board of the Wilfred Martens Centre for European Studies