Sartaj Aziz (Born - 7 February 1929), is a Pakistani statesman, veteran Pakistan Movement activist, and the professor of economics at the Beaconhouse National University. He served as the 21st Treasure Minister during both first and second terms of Prime minister Nawaz Sharif. His last government assignment was at the Foreign ministry as its minister until the removal of Sharif's government on 12 October 1999. According to Pakistan Muslim League (N) sources, veteran politician Sartaj Aziz has emerged as a strong presidential candidate to be sworn in September 2013.
Aziz is noted for driving the Pakistan's national economy on free-market economics principle and initiated the economic liberalization and privatization programmes. In addition, he served as an adviser to the Foreign ministry while he helped implementing the economic policy through Economic Coordination Committee (ECC). He is renowned for his peace activism and was the only senior minister opposing the decision of conducting nuclear tests in response to India, but later retraced his position in 2002. As of current, Aziz is serving as the vice-chancellor of the Beaconhouse National University (BNU) as well as the professor of economics and management sciences.
Education and Pakistan Movement
Sartaj Aziz was born in the Kakakhel family in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. In the 1940s, Aziz was a young activist in the Muslim League-led Pakistan movement. Aziz was educated at Islamia College of Lahore and then obtained a Bachelor's degree in Economics from the Punjab University in 1949. Aziz proceeded to join the civil service of the state of Pakistan in 1950. Later, he traveled to the United States and earned a master's degree in public administration from Harvard University in 1962. Returning to work in the government, he attained the position of joint secretary in the Planning Commission of Pakistan in 1967. Aziz later worked in the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization from 1971 to 1975, and the International Fund for Agricultural Development from 1978 to 1984.