Washington, D.C. January 3, 2012 – Pamela Cox, a development professional with more than 30 years experience, has been appointed the World Bank’s Vice President for East Asia and the Pacific, effective this week.
The appointment, by World Bank Group President Robert B. Zoellick, will see Ms. Cox lead the Bank’s advisory and lending operations in the region and oversee strategic engagement with middle income country partners.
Ms. Cox previously worked as Vice President for the Latin America and Caribbean Region of the Bank, playing a leading role in supporting inclusive growth in emerging economies and providing innovative and practical financial and knowledge services to meet developing country needs. In the past, she has also worked as Chief of Country Operations in Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand, and Korea.
“I am very excited to be back working in the East Asia region,” said Pamela Cox. “After making the fastest progress in growth and poverty reduction of any region around the world in the last fifteen years, the global economic weight and influence of East Asia and the Pacific has increased significantly. We are focused on supporting countries in the region as they work to achieve higher income status and promote growth and opportunity for those in need.”
Ms. Cox brings with her considerable expertise in disaster risk management, in which Latin America and the Caribbean has been particularly successful, and which is extremely relevant for East Asia, a region that faces very high risks from natural disasters.
“Rapid growth and urbanization in vulnerable areas are creating a need for countries in East Asia to build innovative and disaster-resilient cities and to ensure environmental sustainability, and adaptation to the effects of climate change. Primarily investments in disaster risk management can save lives, but they also make good economic sense,” said Ms. Cox.
In her new role, Ms. Cox will continue to deliver Bank support to Pacific Island countries, which face some of the most serious challenges related to disaster risk and climate change.
As Vice President for East Asia and the Pacific, Pamela Cox will manage staff working across 22 countries and a US$ 29.7 billion lending portfolio. Projected IBRD (International Bank for Reconstruction) and IDA (International Development Association) lending for the region in the 2012 financial year is US$ 6.7 billion. Ms. Cox is replacing former East Asia Pacific Vice President, James W. Adams, who is retiring from the Bank after more than 3 decades of distinguished service.