Meet World Bank New President: Five Facts About Ajay Banga

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News in brief: Ajay Banga has emerged as the president of the World Bank. A businessman of over 40 years, see what you should know about him.

Ajay Banga has been appointed as the new president of the World Bank for the next five years. In a report by AFP, he was the sole nominee for the job after the Joe Biden administration picked him.

Five career highlights of Ajay Banga

  1. The 63-year-old Indian-born businessman has been a US citizen since 2007. He was born in India spent his early days in the country, graduating from college and postgraduate school there. Even his career began in India as he worked with Nestlé as a management trainee for 13 years starting from 1981. His breakthrough came when he joined PepsiCo and was part of the team that launched its international fast food franchises like Pizza Hut and KFC in the newly liberalised economy.
  2. He moved to the US in 1996 when he got a job with Citigroup and rose through the ranks before leading the CitiFinancial and the US Consumer Assets Division. Baga was chief executive of Citi’s International Global Consumer Group between 2005 and 2008. He was also serving as the institution’s chief executive of the bank’s Asia-Pacific business. Later in 2008, he would become one of Citigroup’s most paid executives after receiving a compensation of $10 million.
  3. Ajay Banga was announced a Mastercard chief operating officer (COO) in April 2010 and became president and CEO three months later. He was also on the payment company’s board. The businessman tripled the firm’s revenues during his tenure from about $30 billion to over $300 billion. He also announced the Priceless Planet Coalition, which has over 100-member companies investing in preserving the environment.
  4. In 2015, President Barack Obama appointed him as a member of the President’s Advisory Committee for Trade Policy and Negotiations. He also leads the advisors of Vice President Kamala Harris on her administration’s work in El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras.
  5. Banga was elected chairman of International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) in 2020 after serving as First Vice-Chair in 2018. He has been vice chairman of private equity company General Atlantic.

World Bank evolution

Ajay Banga’s appointment as the new World Bank president is a move in a new direction, at least that is what the board claimed in its statement. President Joe Biden reiterated something similar in his comment. Although, many don’t agree because it continues the trend of the presidency of the international lender falling to an American.

The man of the moment has told the press that the private sector remain important in proving monetary aid to countries. He believes the World Bank can work through private funds to reach its targets.

His reputation for linking the public, private and non-profit sector has been seen as an advantage for his new role. With the world economies experience slowing growth, inflation and increasing interest rates, it is an interesting time for the business executive and the international bank.

Obinna Onwuasoanya
Obinna Onwuasoanya
Obinna Onwuasoanya is a tech reporter of over five years, fiction writer, SEO expert and an editor. He is based in Lagos, Nigeria, and was previously shortlisted for the Writivism Short Story Prize 2018.

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