Who is Kwasi Kwarteng? Everything to know about the Chancellor

The Chancellor has been called the 'political soulmate' of new PM Liz Truss

Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng leaving number 11 Downing Street
(Image credit: Getty Images)

He's made headlines following the delivery of a controversial mini budget (opens in new tab), but many want to know more about who is Kwasi Kwarteng?

With a new PM and a new cabinet too, it's understandable that people want to know more about those who lead the country. Just like many have been asking does Liz Truss have children (opens in new tab), a similar attention has turned to Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng.

After the delivery of a mini budget that saw the biggest programme of tax cuts since 1972 and has been criticised by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) - with Tory MPs now told that they will lose the whip (opens in new tab) if they don't vote for it - people want to know more about the man behind the plan, and are asking who is Kwasi Kwarteng?

Who is Kwasi Kwarteng?

Kwasi Kwarteng has been Chancellor of the Exchequer since 6 September 2022. He was born in East London in 1975 - the same year as the PM - and his parents came to the UK from Ghana as students in the 1960s.

His father is Commonwealth Secretariat economist Alfred K. Kwarteng, and his mother is barrister Charlotte Boaitey-Kwarteng. While growing up, Kwarteng attended independent preparatory school Colet Court, where he won the Harrow History Prize in 1988.

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He then went on to Eton College, where he was a King's Scholar and awarded the Newcastle Scholarship prize, before reading classics and history at Trinity College, Cambridge.

In 1995, Kwarteng was part of the Cambridge team that won University Challenge, and made headlines during the contest for swearing after he buzzed in and forgot the answer to a question.

According to his Government biography (opens in new tab), Kwarteng's passions include history, music and languages.

Kwasi Kwarteng career history

After earning a PhD in economic history from the University of Cambridge in 2000, Kwarteng went on to work as an analyst in financial services before his career in politics.

In 2005, he stood for election for the first time as the Conservative candidate for Brent East in the 2005 general election, where he came third. He missed out again in 2008 when he was sixth on the Conservative list of candidates for the London Assembly, but was not elected.

Then, in 2010, Kwarteng first became an MP. He was selected as the Conservative candidate for Spelthorne after the incumbent Conservative MP, David Wilshire, announced he would be retiring.

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From 2010 until 2013 he was a member of the Transport Select Committee, and in 2013 he joined the Work and Pensions Select Committee where he was a member until 2015. Kwarteng has also been a member of the Public Accounts Committee and Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Leader of the House of Lords and to the Chancellor of the Exchequer.

In Boris Johnson's government, Kwarteng was appointed Secretary of State at the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, where he remained until Liz Truss appointed him as Chancellor of the Exchequer as one of her new Cabinet ministers (opens in new tab).

Kwarteng has also authored several books, including Ghosts of Empire (opens in new tab), War and Gold (opens in new tab) and Thatcher’s Trial (opens in new tab).

Is Kwasi Kwarteng married?

Kwasi Kwarteng is married to Solicitor Harriet Edwards (opens in new tab). The pair got married in December 2019 after a seven month engagement.

Edwards, who is reportedly in her 30s, attended Cheltenham Ladies' College before graduating from Trinity College, Dublin, in History and Modern Languages. She then worked for auctioneers Christie's in Geneva and then UBS investment bank in New York, before qualifying as a solicitor.

The Daily Mail (opens in new tab) reported that Kwarteng had proposed to Edwards at her mother's house in Derbyshire, and that he said "we're very happy."

Prior to marrying Edwards, Kwasi Kwarteng reportedly had an on-off romance with former Home Secretary Amber Rudd.

Does Kwasi Kwarteng have children?

Kwasi Kwarteng has one child, a daughter named Ida who was born in October 2021.

Kwarteng has previously been described as 'intensely private'. He keeps his personal life out of the public eye and avoids sharing photos of his wife and daughter online.

Kwasi Kwarteng net worth

According to LADBible (opens in new tab), Kwasi Kwarteng's net worth is somewhere between £800,000 and £1.5 million.

As an MP, Kwarteng's annual salary will be £81,932, according to the House of Commons Library (opens in new tab), and as Chancellor of the Exchequer he receives an additional £67,505.

While an impressive figure, it doesn't come close to his predecessor Rishi Sunak's net worth (opens in new tab), who's fortune is valued at £730 million, according to The Sunday Times Rich List.

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