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The Treasury's Leadership Team Profiles

Page updated 1 Mar 2017

Gabriel Makhlouf – Secretary and Chief Executive

Gabriel Makhlouf – Secretary  and Chief ExecutiveGabriel Makhlouf is the Treasury Secretary and Chief Executive. He is the Government’s chief economic and financial adviser, and leads the Treasury’s work to help raise living standards for New Zealanders through a stable, growing economy, and a high performing public service.

Gabriel’s career was previously in the UK civil service where his responsibilities ranged from policy development on domestic and international tax and welfare policy issues through to large-scale, customer-focused, operational delivery. He was Chair of the world’s main tax rule-making body – the Committee on Fiscal Affairs – at the OECD in Paris between 2000-2004 and was also responsible for the UK’s Government Banking Service. He led the UK team that negotiated the current US/UK double tax treaty and served as Principal Private Secretary to the Chancellor of the Exchequer. 

Gabriel has a Bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Exeter and a Master’s degree in industrial relations from the University of Bath, and is an alumnus of international business school INSEAD’s Advanced Management Programme. The son of UN diplomats, Gabriel grew up in the Pacific and speaks French and Greek. He is married with one adult son.


Bryan Chapple – Deputy Secretary, Macroeconomics and Growth

Bryan Chapple – Deputy Secretary, Growth & Public  ServicesAs  Deputy Secretary, Macroeconomics and Growth Bryan’s role is focused on ensuring a stable and sustainable macroeconomic environment, while at the same time promoting economic growth.

Bryan has an extensive background in economic policy and strategy. Prior to joining the Treasury in 2017 Bryan was with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) where he held roles as the Head of the Office of the Chief Executive, and General Manager Strategic Policy.

Bryan has also worked in a range of policy and economic functions at the Ministry of Economic Development, the De Nederlandsche Bank (Netherlands Central Bank) and the Reserve Bank of New Zealand.

Bryan holds a Bachelor of Commerce and Administration (Hons) in Economics from Victoria University of Wellington as well as a Bachelor of Business Studies from Massey University. Bryan lives in Wellington with his wife and two children.  He enjoys getting out into the hills around Wellington when he can, and supporting his boys' sports teams.

Tim Ng – Deputy Secretary, Chief Economic Advisor

Tim Ng – Deputy Secretary, Growth & Public  ServicesTim Ng is the Treasury's Chief Economic Advisor. He leads the Treasury's work to raise living standards through policy advice on settings to promote economic growth and a stable macroeconomic environment. Specific policy areas include education and skills, the labour market and welfare, infrastructure, natural resources, regulation, financial markets, international policy, housing affordability, tax strategy, macroeconomic policy, economic forecasting, modelling and research, and analytics and insights.

Tim is a macroeconomist by training, with extensive international experience as an adviser and thought leader on monetary, fiscal and financial system policy, and has published in a range of professional and academic journals.

For much of his career prior to his Treasury position, Tim managed a range of functions at the Reserve Bank of New Zealand, covering domestic and international economic monitoring and forecasting, monetary policy conduct, banking regulation and payments system policy. During his time at the Reserve Bank he served as a member of the Reserve Bank’s Monetary Policy Committee, Macro-Financial Committee and Financial System Oversight Committee.

Tim has also worked at the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, and the National Bank of New Zealand.

Tim was born and raised in Auckland. He has postgraduate degrees in economics from Victoria University of Wellington and in biochemistry from the University of Auckland.

Fiona Ross – Chief Operating Officer and Deputy Secretary, Strategy, Performance & Engagement

Fiona Ross – Acting Chief Operating Officer and Deputy Secretary, Strategy, Performance & EngagementFiona re-joined the Treasury in 2011. She helps to raise living standards by ensuring the Treasury operates effectively as an organisation.

Fiona has over 20 years’ experience in the public service, with particular expertise in state sector reform. After initial positions at the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Women’s Affairs, Fiona joined the Treasury as a senior policy analyst in 2000. In 2002 she moved to the UK where she held various roles in the civil service, including leading major change initiatives focused on efficiency gains and service improvements. Fiona returned to the Treasury to lead the Better Public Services Programme, the government’s flagship programme to improve outcomes for New Zealanders.

Fiona holds an Honours degree in Arts and a Master’s degree in Public Policy, both from Victoria University of Wellington. She has been actively involved with a number of not-for-profit groups focused on the issues of sexual abuse and women’s sport and fitness.

Sarah Vrede – Acting Deputy Secretary, Financial & Commercial

Sarah Vrede – ActingDeputy Secretary, Financial & Commercial OperationsSarah joined Treasury in March 2013 as Head of Portfolio Management and from August 2014 has had responsibility for both the New Zealand debt management and export credit offices. In July 2015 Sarah was appointed Director, Financial Operations as part of Treasury’s senior leadership team.

Sarah’s background is predominantly in financial markets at Bank of New Zealand and DFC New Zealand. Previous roles have included: head of derivatives trading, head of treasury information and technology and director - business delivery.

Sarah has Bachelor and Master’s degrees in accounting and finance from Victoria University of Wellington and the London School of Economics.

Struan Little – Deputy Secretary, Budget and Public Services

Struan Little – Deputy Secretary, Budget and Public ServicesStruan is an economist with over 30 years of experience in finance and public sector management.

Struan first joined the Treasury in 1987, after completing his postgraduate diploma in Economics at Otago University. Several years later he served as the head of a delegation that was sent to the International Monetary Fund and World Bank to represent New Zealand’s economic interests and ensure these organisations took into account the interests of small countries.

Since then he has served in a range leadership roles across Government; including, with the Ministry of Education and most recently serving as Inland Revenue’s Deputy Commissioner of Policy & Strategy.

During his time at Inland Revenue, Struan worked with the senior management team to implement changes designed to modernise tax. This involved fundamental changes to both operations and technology. As part of this work, Struan was responsible for design of the future tax administration framework.

He has also held advisory roles in the Office of the Minister of Finance and at the World Bank in Washington D.C.

Struan re-joined the Treasury in 2016 as Deputy Secretary Budget and Public Services. In this capacity he leads the Treasury’s work to raise living standards by:

  • helping ensure Government’s finances are well managed
  • overseeing advice in the areas of justice, security, health, earthquake coordination and public sector performance
  • delivering the Government’s annual Budget. 

Struan is a tramping and fly fishing enthusiast who combines his love of travel with the opportunity to get into the outdoors.

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