World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim has appointed Victoria Kwakwa as the new Regional Vice President for East Asia and Pacific.
Kwakwa, a Ghanaian national, will lead the Bank’s advisory and lending operations in the region and oversee strategic engagement with the region’s 23 member countries. The Bank’s lending in East Asia Pacific is expected to be over $7 billion in the fiscal year ending June 30.
“I am honored to lead our engagement in a region that is key to the future relevance of the World Bank Group,” said Kwakwa.
Kwakwa was previously the World Bank’s Country Director of Vietnam, overseeing a multibillion-dollar lending portfolio and an innovative knowledge program.
Most recently, Kwakwa led a joint team with the government to produce the Vietnam 2035 report, which presents options for Vietnam to achieve its ambitious goal of becoming an upper-middle-income country in a generation.
Before moving to Hanoi, Kwakwa was the Country Manager for Rwanda, where she worked with the government to design and pilot programs in social protection, health financing and agriculture productivity.
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From 2000 to 2006, she was a senior economist and lead economist in Abuja, Nigeria, where she set up a program of state-level analytical work and provided policy advice on how to efficiently and transparently manage oil revenues.
Kwakwa joined the Bank as a Young Professional in 1989 and worked on the 2000-2001 World Development Report on poverty. She holds a bachelor’s in economics from the University of Ghana, Legon and earned a master’s and doctorate from Queen’s University in Canada.
Photo courtesy: World Bank