World Bank Country Office to be upgraded to Sub-Regional Office


Effective July 1, the World Bank Country Office in Nepal will be upgraded to a Sub-Regional Office responsible for country operations in three countries — Nepal, Maldives and Sri Lanka. The Sub-Regional Office has been changed from Sri Lanka to Nepal with the country director for the three countries stationed in Kathmandu.

Faris H Hadad-Zervos, country manager for Nepal Country Office, has been appointed as the country director for Nepal, Maldives and Sri Lanka.

“In this new role, my top three priorities are to: Ensure programmes in all three countries contribute to sustainable growth, jobs, poverty reduction and inclusion; work in close cooperation with development partners to leverage support and results; and lead a diverse and effective country management leadership team and actively participate in the regional agenda,” Hadad-Zervos has said in a media release. “In view of the continued importance of our partnership and programmes in Sri Lanka, a dedicated country manager will be stationed there who will lead the programme under my guidance.”

Meanwhile, Lada Strelkova will serve as portfolio and operations manager out of the Kathmandu Office also effective July 1.

Hadad-Zervos, a US national, joined the World Bank in 1996 with the Private Sector Development Department. He served as manager of the Technical Cooperation Programme with the Gulf Cooperation Countries (2000-03), head of mission for Iraq (2003 2005), operations manager for the West Bank and Gaza (2005-08), acting director for Fragile States in the Operations Department (2010-11) and country manager for Bolivia (2012-15).

In 2008, Hadad-Zervos took a leave of absence from the World Bank to serve as the deputy head of the Quartet Office for the Middle East Peace Process, based in Jerusalem.

Hadad-Zervos holds a Master's degree in economics from George Mason University, and a Master's degree in finance from George Washington University.

Meanwhile, Strelkova has served as operations adviser overseeing the World Bank programme in the Western Balkans (2016-20). A Bulgarian national, she joined the World Bank in 1998 as operations officer in the Private and Financial Sector Development Sector Unit of Europe and Central Asia (ECA) region of the World Bank. Since then, she also worked as senior operations officer in the Quality Unit in ECA (2002-03) and in the Results Secretariat of the Operations Policy and Country Services unit (2003-05), as special assistant to the regional vice president for South Asia (2005-07), and as country programme coordinator for the Philippines (2007-11) and the Russian Federation (2011-15).

In her work for the bank, Strelkova brings prior research experience in macroeconomic forecasting, European integration, and international trade, building on her graduate degree and postgraduate work in international economic relations.

A version of this article appears in e-paper on June 19, 2020, of The Himalayan Times.