The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has appointed Philippe Le Houérou as vice-president of policy.

He joins from the World Bank where he was most recently the regional vice-president for the South Asia region, where he enhanced the region’s portfolio performance and doubled new commitments to US$11bn in 2013.

Le Houérou will report to the EBRD president, Sir Suma Chakrabarti, and takes up his new position on January 12, 2015. He will be responsible for leading the bank’s strategies, policies and related initiatives supporting the bank’s transition mandate.

“I look forward to joining the EBRD and contributing to its mission to provide economic development solutions for its recipient countries,” Le Houérou says. “I strongly believe that policy dialogue based on sound analytics is the key to economic reform and performance. It is also essential for ensuring the maximum impact of individual investment operations.”

The bank says that a competitive selection process saw vast international interest in the position, but his nomination was approved by the board of directors.

“We had an extremely strong field of international candidates and Philippe will bring a great deal of policy and strategic experience to the EBRD,” comments Chakrabarti. Le Houérou is also set to become a member of the bank’s executive committee.

Le Houérou joined the World Bank in 1987 and has worked in East Asia, LatAm, Africa, Europe and Central Asia. Since 2006 he has held a number of other key leadership roles, including regional vice-president for Europe and Central Asia, vice-president of concessional finance and global partnerships and acting vice-president and chief information officer.

In the early 1990s, he served as the senior country economist for the World Bank’s programme in Russia and advised on budget management and public expenditure issues. Le Houéro will help to strategically boost the bank’s ranks amid the geopolitical tension between Europe and Russia.