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Hon. Peter Costello AO


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Ex Australian Treasurer

The path of politics is not easy; requiring a formidable personality to navigate its many challenges. Peter Costello is just that personality. His 1990 election as MP for Higgins evolved into Liberal Party Deputy Leader (1994), setting the scene for his 1996 transition to Federal Treasurer. It’s in this role Peter enacted his greatest achievements, guiding Australia through significant financial reform including the elimination of Commonwealth debt worth $96 billion; introduction of the GST and cutting income and company taxes, to name but a few. Peter’s best selling memoir recounts his illustrious national and international career and he today continues that contribution as Chairman of Australia's Future Fund.

Peter Costello practiced as a lawyer and Barrister for ten years before entering the Australian Parliament where he served over nineteen years.  From March 1996 to December 2007 he was Treasurer of the Commonwealth of Australia, a record term and the longest serving Treasurer in Australia’s history.

In January 2011 he was made a Companion (AC) in the Order of Australia.

During his time as Treasurer of the Commonwealth of Australia he was responsible for foreign investment policy, competition (anti-trust) policy, corporate regulation, superannuation, tax policy and the Federal Budget.  He brought down twelve consecutive Federal Budgets, including ten surpluses and eliminated government debt in net terms and established Australia’s Future Fund.  During his period as Treasurer, Australia’s sovereign rating was upgraded twice to its current AAA level.

Peter Costello was first elected a Member of the House of Representatives for the seat of Higgins in March 1990 and re-elected on six subsequent occasions. He was elected Deputy Leader of the Liberal Party of Australia in May 1994 and served in that post to November 2007.

Peter Costello introduced the largest tax reform in Australian history called: A New Tax System, which introduced GST, abolished seven taxes and reduced income, capital gains and company taxes.

Peter Costello is currently Chairman of Australias Future Fund.

During his time as Treasurer he:-

  • Re-designed financial supervision and established new prudential and consumer regulators.
  • Reformed and modernised Corporations law under the CLERP program.
  • Established the Takeovers Panel to hear disputes over mergers and acquisitions.
  • Introduced the largest reform of superannuation with the abolition of tax on superannuation payouts for those over 60.
  • Established the Future Fund currently holding around $70 billion in assets.
  • Established the Higher Education Endowment Fund as a perpetual fund for the Australian University sector with an initial contribution of $6 billion.

Mr Costello set up Australia’s system of financial regulation with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission and the Australian Prudential Regulatory Authority established in 1998 and the Financial Services Reform Act of 2001.  He introduced Australia’s monetary policy targets by agreement with the Reserve Bank of Australia.

For more than a decade Mr Costello was a Governor of the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank. He was also a member of the Committee of the International Monetary Fund.  He has been Chairman of the OECD Ministerial and the APEC Finance Ministers.  He was involved in the establishment of the G20 after the Asian Financial Crisis and was Global Chairman of the G20 in 2006.

Mr Costello has been a columnist for Australia’s Fairfax and News Limited papers and has been published in the Financial Times and the Wall St Journal.


His best-selling memoir The Costello Memoirs was published in 2008 by Melbourne University Press. The book is a collection of writings co-authored by former politician and Costello's father-in-law, Peter Coleman.

Mr Costello has Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Laws (with Honours) degrees from Monash University where he was, for a time, a part-time teacher in law and economics/politics, as well as a member of the University Council. Prior to entering Parliament, he was a barrister. He was counsel in some of Australia’s best-known industrial disputes.

Presentation Topics Include

  • Ethical Leadership
  • Corporate Social Responsibility
  • Climate Change Sustainability Issues


“Excellent.  Very inspiring, Tim Costello was very casual and informal and talked about subjects all attendees could associate with."
Outer East Employment Service

“Very appropriate and challenging to all who attended."
Loddon Shire Council

"Very inspirational speaker and well accepted by the audience". 
MacKillop College

"Tim's presentations were thoughtful, insightful and entertaining. He related well to the audience and engaged them in an informal dialogue that instantly made the audience feel relaxed and part of a conversation. An inspirational individual."
Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment

"Tim is an excellent speaker, engaging, informative and very personable.  His talk was very much enjoyed by all at the meeting.  On a personal level he is very warm and delightfully easy to talk to.  It was a deligth to meet and spend time with Tim."
QLD Health

“Mr Costello did a fantastic Job, "he delivered a great message" in a way that customers could understand. Peter is a true professional in the way he interacted with our customers and staff, he gave them a great feeling of importance. CMV Truck and Bus felt comfortable with Mr Costello after meeting with him prior to our event, he gave me confidence to put our whole customer base in front of him." 
CMV Truck & Bus

“Excellent, Peter hit the mark perfectly - understood what the tone of the evening was and scoped his remarks accordingly".
CEO Forum Group

“Excellent - As expected, Peter was engaging, educational and incredibly compelling to listen to. The perfect way to kick off our conference. Thank you". 
Genesys Holdings Pty Ltd

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