YEREVAN, September 12, 2014—World Bank Regional Director for South Caucasus, Mr. Henry G. Kerali, presented to Armenian authorities the new World Bank Country Manager for Armenia, Ms. Laura E. Bailey.
The World Bank delegation led by the Regional Director and the incoming Country Manager met with the high level Armenian officials, including the Prime Minister, the Deputy Prime Minister and the Ministers of Finance, Economy, Energy, Health and the Chairman of the Central Bank among the others. During the meeting with Hovik Abrahamyan, the Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia, the parties have reaffirmed that under Ms. Bailey’s leadership, the Bank’s partnership with the government and other stakeholders will develop further to ensure better leveraging of financial and knowledge resources in addressing the new challenges and supporting the Armenia to further progress in reducing poverty and boosting shared prosperity.
A reception ceremony in honor of the newly arrived Country Manager has been held, gathering the key stakeholders from the Government, donor agencies and civil society organizations.
“The World Bank enjoys a fruitful and comprehensive partnership with Armenia,” said Henry Kerali. "Ms. Bailey brings a wide range of development experience and expertise to this position and we look forward to strengthening and deepening our partnership with the country during her tenure as World Bank Country Manager for Armenia.”
The new Country Manager for Armenia has started her assignment with the reaffirmation of the Bank’s commitment to supporting policy reforms, sustaining changes in education and social protection areas, improving agriculture resource management, rehabilitating energy supply infrastructure and strengthening country’s export capacity.
During her previous assignments, Ms. Laura Bailey worked in large middle-income, transition and small post-conflict countries. When at Bank headquarters some of her duties included launching partnership initiatives across multilateral and bilateral agencies, leading operational innovations for Bank policies related to ‘rapid response’ operations, and providing support to a wide range of country teams across different regions.
Prior to joining the World Bank in 2005, Ms. Bailey worked for 16 years in economic development projects across countries in Asia, Africa, and Central America, and spent three years in the private sector in the USA during the mid-1980s high-technology boom.
Ms. Bailey, a US citizen, holds a Master of Public Policy degree from Harvard University, Kennedy School of Government with concentrations in international trade and international development.
The World Bank’s current portfolio in Armenia consists of 17 operations with a total commitment of US$517.7 million. It includes US$200 million in International Development Association (IDA) credit and US$316 million in International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) loans along with a Global Environmental Fund (GEF) project amounting US$1.8 million.
Since joining the World Bank in 1992 and IDA in 1993, the commitments to Armenia total approximately US$1,961.73 million.