Theo Waigel is a German politician of the Christian Social Union (CSU) in Bavaria.
He served as Minister of Finance in the Cabinet of Helmut Kohl from 1989 to 1998. His time in office was marked by the peaceful revolution in East Germany, the disintegration of the Soviet Union and the ‘coalescence’ of Europe. Both as the CSU party leader and as a Minister, he was instrumental in bringing about re-unification and in securing Gorbachev’s agreement to a united Germany being part of NATO.
During the same period, Waigel played a pivotal role in the introduction of the Euro. Had it not been for him, the Stability Pact underpinning the single European currency might never have become reality. He also oversaw the economic and monetary aspects of German reunification, including the privatisation of several Eastern German state companies.
Waigel was a member for Bavaria in the Bundestag from 1972 to 2002. A member of CSU since 1960, he became its Chairman from 1988 to 1999 and was appointed Honorary Chairman in 2009. From 1982 to 1989 he was head of the CSU parliamentary group at the Bundestag and First Deputy Chairman of the CDU/CSU parliamentary group.
Since his retirement, he has been active in the private sector, serving as a member of the advisory board at Deutsche Vermögensberatung AG and EnBW. He is also a consultant for Texas Pacific Group, a venture capital firm, and the Brunswick Group.
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