Effective July 1 2017, Saroj Kumar Jha asumed his position as new Country Director for the Mashreq region, with a mandate spanning Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria.
Jha, an Indian national, brings to the region a vast experience in a critical period of transition. He previously headed the Bank’s Fragility Conflict and Violence unit. And before then, he was Director for Central Asia.
In his Middle East position, Jha’s top priorities will be: (i) maintaining a dialogue with all stakeholders to provide overall strategic leadership for the Bank’s engagement in line with the region's emphasis on job creation, sustainable growth, inclusion and governance; (ii) developing a strong analytical program that can inform policy and investment choices; and (iii) building effective, integrated country teams to ensure efficient and high quality support to the client focused on results, said Hafez Ghanem, the World Bank’s Vice President for the Middle East and North Africa, in a statement announcing Jha’s appointment.