Former Indonesian minister Mari Pangestu appointed as World Bank managing director

Mari Elka Pangestu is a well-known economist with an international reputation and ministerial experience

World Bank Group President David Malpass has announced the appointment of former Indonesian minister, Mari Elka Pangestu, as the global lender's Managing Director for Development Policy and Partnership.

"We're very pleased to welcome Mari to the Bank in this critical new role for the institution," Malpass stated. He also praised Mari's "exceptional policy and management expertise" due to her past experience as a minister during the Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (SBY) presidency.

Mari Pangestu is the second Indonesian woman to hold a strategic position at the World Bank after Sri Mulyani Indrawati, the current finance minister.

Mari Elka Pangestu
Mari Elka Pangestu Wikimedia Commons

Who is Mari Elka Pangestu?

Mari Elka Pangestu earned her Bachelor's and Master's degrees from the Australian National University (ANU). She gained a Master's in economics from the University of California in 1986.

She joined a think tank, Center for Strategic and International Studies(CSIS), in 1986. The 64-year-old is a professor of international economics at the University of Indonesia. Her reputation in academia includes her role as a professor assistant at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, the ANU, and the Crawford School of Public Policy.

She is currently the head of the supervisory board at the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFRI) and an active advisor for the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) in Abu Dhabi. Mari served as the Minister of Trade from 2004 to 2011. She replaced Jero Wacik as the Minister of Creative Economy and Tourism and served from 2011 to 2014. Both the positions she held were during the Presidency of Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, also known as SBY.

Her role

Mari will lead and supervise the Global Practice Groups, the research, and the data of the World Bank (DEC) as well as the function of External and Corporate Relations, Her appointment is effective from March 1, 2020.

Indonesia cheers the Washington DC-based creditor's decision to appoint Mari. Bank of Indonesia (BI) Governor Perry Warjiyo is optimistic Mari's role in the World Bank group will contribute positively to emerging economies given her upcoming tasks. "She will handle a better development policy for emerging markets, including Indonesia," Warjiyo said as translated from Kompas.