Ali Babacan was born in Ankara in 1967. He graduated first in the Class of 1985 from the TED Ankara High School. In 1989, he received a Bachelor of Science Degree (BS) in Industrial Engineering from the Middle East Technical University in Ankara, where he ranked first among the graduates of that year.
In 1990, he was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship and attended the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois, where he received his Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Marketing, Organizational Behavior and International Business in 1992.
From 1992 to 1994, he worked at a Chicago-based company providing financial consulting services to top executives of major banks in the United States. Subsequently, he returned to Ankara to run his family business from 1994 until 2002. In 2001, he became a Founding Member and Board Member of the Justice and Development Party (AkParti), a position that he still retains.
At the general elections in November 2002, he was elected to Parliament and appointed as the Minister of Economy, a cabinet position he retained until August 2007. In addition to his tenure as Minister of Economy, on June 3, 2005, he was appointed as Chief Negotiator in Turkey’s accession negotiations with the European Union.
At the general elections held on 22 July 2007 he was re-elected to the Parliament. In August 2007, he was appointed as the Minister of Foreign Affairs and in May 2009 he was appointed as Deputy Prime Minister, in charge of Finance and Economy.