Hans Wijers in 2010
|Minister of Economic Affairs of the Netherlands|
22 August 1994 – 3 August 1998
|Prime Minister||Wim Kok|
|Preceded by||Koos Andriessen|
|Succeeded by||Annemarie Jorritsma|
|Minister of Finance of the Netherlands|
4 June 1996 – 26 June 1996
|Prime Minister||Wim Kok|
|Preceded by||Gerrit Zalm|
|Succeeded by||Gerrit Zalm|
|Born||Gerardus Johannes Wijers
11 January 1951
|Political party||Democrats 66 (from 1976)|
|Domestic partner||Edith Sijmons|
|Children||1 son and 1 daughter|
|Alma mater||University of Groningen
(Master of Economics)
Erasmus University Rotterdam (Doctor of Philosophy)
Wijers a management consultant, corporate director and civil servant by occupation, worked for the Ministry of Social Affairs and Employment from 1982 until 1984. Wijers worked as a management consultant from 1985 until 1994. After the Dutch general election of 1994 Wijers was asked by the Democrats 66 (D66) to become Minister of Economic Affairs in the Cabinet Kok I under Prime Minister Wim Kok of the Labour Party, serving from 22 August 1994 until 3 August 1998. He served as acting Minister of Finance from 4 June 1996 until 26 June 1996 following a illness of Gerrit Zalm.
Wijers retired from active politics when the Cabinet Kok II was installed on 3 August 1998 and became a corporate director at the Boston Consulting Group serving as a senior vice president from 1999 until 2002 when he corporate director at the multinational AkzoNobel serving until 2003 when he became Chairman of the Board of directors and CEO serving until 2012. Wijers also occupied occupied numerous seats on supervisory boards in the business and industry world and several international non-governmental organizations (Royal Dutch Shell, Heineken International, GlaxoSmithKline and the World Wide Fund for Nature). He has been the Chairman of the Supervisory board of football club AFC Ajax since 2012.
After secondary school at Hogere burgerschool (HBS-B) level, Wijers studied Economics at the Rijksuniversiteit Groningen, where he graduated in 1976. As assistant professor, he taught Economics at the Erasmus University, and in 1982 received a doctorate for his research in "Industrial politics: the design of governmental policy for industrial sectors".
From 1982 till 1984, Wijers worked as a civil servant at the ministry of Social Affairs and Labour and later at the ministry of Economic Affairs. Subsequently, he became a management consultant at The Boston Consulting Group for, among others, Bakkenist, Spits & Co.
As minister of Economic affairs from 1994 onward, he was responsible for the law change regarding the extending of shop opening hours, and the coined the Competition Regulation law. A short period he was interim minister of Finance, during illness of Gerrit Zalm, the minister at the time. Wijers completed one full four-year period of the Dutch ministerial cabinet until 1998. Then he chose to continue his career in consultancy, where he became senior vice president of the Boston Consulting Group. As a secondary job from 1999 until 2003, Wijers also was president of the Dutch tributary of the World Wildlife Fund.
From May 2003, he was the president of the Board of Management of AkzoNobel; Former Sulzer AG CEO Ton Büchner has succeeded him on 23 April 2012. Additional to his work for AkzoNobel, Wijers is non-executive director at Royal Dutch Shell, Chairman of the supervisory board of AFC Ajax, Chairman of the Oranje Fonds and the Ubbo Emmius Fund Foundation at the University of Groningen. He is also active for the Concertgebouw, the Young Pianist Foundation and the European Round Table of Industrialists.
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