Indonesian economist and former Trade Minister Mari Elka Pangestu has been appointed as Managing Director (MD), Development Policy and Partnerships for the World Bank, the bank’s chief announced.
In a statement, World Bank Group President David Malpass said Pangestu joins the Bank with exceptional policy and management expertise, having served as Indonesia’s minister of trade from 2004 to 2011 and as minister of tourism and creative economy from 2011 until October 2014.
“We’re very pleased to welcome Mari to the Bank in this critical new role for the institution,” he said.
Malpass noted that her experience as a senior Minister and other important roles in international forums will greatly benefit World Bank’s urgent work at the World Bank Group in support of broad-based growth and poverty reduction.
Pangestu is currently a senior fellow at Columbia School of International and Public Affairs, as well as chairperson of the Board of Trustees of the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) in Washington D.C.
She became second Indonesian woman to hold the strategic post after the current Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati.
According to the statement, upon accepting the appointment, she said: “It is a great honor to be joining the World Bank in its vital development mission. I look forward to the opportunity to work with this strong team on the urgent challenges facing the World Bank’s members”.
Her appointment is effective on March 1, 2020.
Mohammad Faisal, an Indonesian economist, considered Pangestu's appointment was not surprising as Indonesia has been represented in G20 with a growing economy.
"Behind the appointment, of course, there are World Bank's interest to potential and obedient borrower like Indonesia," Faisal told Anadolu Agency on Friday.