World Bank has new country director for Nigeria

Rachid Benmessaoud

The World Bank on Monday announced the appointment of a new Country Director for Nigeria.

He is Rachid Benmessaoud, who would also serve as the Coordinating Director for West Africa Regional Integration Programme.

Mr. Benmessaoud, who joined the World Bank in 1990 as an Energy Planner in the then Europe, Middle East and North Africa Vice-Presidency, would succeed Marie Francoise Marie-Nelly, whose tenure ended in July 2015.

A Moroccan National, the new World Bank Country director has held various positions in the Bank, including Lead Energy Specialist, Operations Advisor for India with his most recent assignment as Country Director for Pakistan.

A statement by the World Bank office in Abuja said Mr. Benmessaoud would lead the Country Programme and Team to continue to improve the impact of the World Bank’s portfolio in Nigeria.

He would also support the government’s development priorities, including power, education, quality of public spending, trade and regional integration.

Mr. Benmessaoud, an electrical engineer, has worked on energy, infrastructure, and municipal finance projects in North Africa, Central Europe and South Asia.

He has a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from the USA and a Doctorate-Engineering Degree from France.

His appointment as Country Director for Nigeria is effective October 1, 2015.

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