Manuela Ferro


Manuela V. Ferro assumed the position of Vice President of Operations Policy and Country Services (OPCS) on July 1, 2017. In this role, Ms. Ferro oversees the World Bank’s corporate policies on financing and analytical services.

A Portuguese national, Ms. Ferro has 25 years of hands-on and leadership experience in Africa, Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean, the Middle East and North Africa, and South Asia.  Throughout her professional career, she has shaped creative development solutions for countries as diverse as post-conflict, low-income all the way to upper middle-income countries. She brings to her current position a track record of modernization of operations policies, a history of forging productive partnerships with client countries and development partners, and a focus on client services.

An economist and an engineer by training, Ms. Ferro worked in technical and corporate positions at the World Bank. She previously served as the Director for Poverty Reduction and Economic Management in the Middle East and North Africa, where she oversaw the team of economists and governance specialists.  Most recently, she served as the World Bank’s Director for Strategy and Operations for Latin America and the Caribbean, overseeing the operational and analytical work in this region over the past three years.

Ms. Ferro was also the Manager of the Country Economics unit in OPCS, overseeing country strategies, development policy financing, and guarantees. She led the launch of the World Bank’s new policies on guarantees, the introduction of Catastrophe Development Policy Operations with a deferred draw down option (CAT DDO) to help clients prepare for and respond to natural disasters, and the modernization of development policy financing with a deferred draw down option (DPF DDO). All are now broadly utilized. 

Ms. Ferro joined the World Bank as a Young Professional in 1994.

Prior to joining the World Bank, Ms. Ferro was an Assistant Professor at The Technical University of Lisbon, from which she holds an MSc./Engineering Degree.  Ms. Ferro holds a Ph.D. and a M.A. in Applied Economics from Stanford University in California. She also worked for the Government of Portugal on EU accession matters. Her professional interests include macroeconomics, game theory, international trade, and labor economics.

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