The World Bank have appointed Hafez Ghanem as their new Vice President for Africa – a posting which the Egyptian and French national took up at the start of the month.
A development expert with over 30 years of experience, Ghanem will lead an active regional portfolio consisting of over 600 projects worth more than US$71 billion.
Under Ghanem’s leadership, the World Bank will continue to support inclusive growth and poverty reduction by financing projects that boost human capital, support private sector development and raise agricultural productivity.
The esteemed, 74-year-old institution also aims to improve access to infrastructure, build resilience to climate change and promote regional integration.
A report from the World Bank office in Gaborone states priority will be given to projects and programs that provide economic opportunities for youth and promote gender equality. The World Bank will also intensify its work in fragile and conflict-affected states.
“Ghanem brings a wealth of experience to the position, having worked in more than 30 countries in Africa, Europe, Asia and the Middle East. Previously the World Bank’s Vice President for the Middle East and North Africa, he led engagement in the region through a portfolio of ongoing projects, technical assistance and grants worth more than US$13 billion,” reads the report in part.
The statement continues that as Sub-Saharan African countries strive to accelerate growth, eradicate extreme poverty and better integrate into the global economy, the World Bank Group remains a committed partner that can be relied upon to bring innovative approaches to development and financing.
Ghanem succeeds Makhtar Diop, who has been appointed as the World Bank’s Vice President for Infrastructure.