Ankara, Turkiye, 14 June 2023 – Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) President and Group Chairman, H.E. Dr. Muhammad Al Jasser, has appointed Dr. Walid Mohamad Abdelwahab as the new Director of IsDB Group Regional Hub Turkiye (RHT), one of the major regional hubs of the AAA-rated multilateral development bank of the Global South. IsDB's head office is located in Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
The appointment, which was made on 8 June 2023, will see Dr. Walid Abdelwahab, an experienced expert in international development and sustainable finance, leading IsDB Group operations in the region through RHT. The hub covers the Group's socioeconomic development interventions in Afghanistan, Albania, Azerbaijan, Iran, Pakistan, and Turkiye.
"I am honored to have been appointed as the Director of the IsDB Group Regional Hub Turkiye and I am very excited to lead IsDB Group's efforts in this region and work towards spearheading the achievement of sustainable development and resilience.," stated Dr. Walid Abdelwahab, who holds a Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from the University of Calgary, Canada.
The IsDB Group, through RHT, is already engaged in responding to the devastating earthquakes that occurred in Turkiye on 6th February 2023. The Bank Group is collaborating with the country to rebuild by focusing on constructing green infrastructure and supporting the private sector to establish more resilient economic foundations.
The newly appointed RHT Director brings a wealth of experience in development finance, public-private partnerships (PPP), Islamic and blended finance, South-South Cooperation, and bilateral and multilateral aid delivery. He possesses a deep understanding of the norms, operational challenges, and objectives associated with multilateral development banks (MDBs). With his background working with public and private stakeholders, Dr. Abdelwahab is a staunch advocate for aligning development finance with the global agenda on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and climate change. He has over two decades of experience in delivering development programs and projects that have improved the livelihoods of millions of people around the world in areas such as health, food security, education, and infrastructure.
Dr. Abdelwahab has also led the mobilization of billions of dollars in concessional resources to help low- and middle-income countries address poverty and conflicts. Notably, he led the preparation of the Bank's response package to the devastating earthquake that struck Turkiye in 1999.
IsDB Group’s RHT manages a portfolio of over US$ 35 billion in development operations in Turkiye and the other five member countries in the region. These operations span various sectors, including education, agriculture, trade, business development, energy generation and transmission, health, water and sanitation, and transport.
In Turkiye, the IsDB Group, through RHT, manages a substantial development portfolio of over US$ 12 billion. The portfolio covers various sectors, such as renewable energy and energy efficiency, green and high-speed rail transport, education, health, industry, road transport, international trade, private sector development, business and credit insurance, as well as SMEs and banking and Islamic finance.
IsDB Group is a trusted development partner of the Republic of Turkiye and has financed major green transport projects in the country. Notable examples include the high-speed train sets running between Ankara and Istanbul, as well as Ankara and Konya, which have significantly reduced the carbon footprint and introduced a safer and more efficient mode of land travel.
In the health sector, the Bank financed the addition of nearly 6,000 modern hospital beds to the country's health system over a span of nearly 6 years. One of the notable projects is the Prof. Dr. CEMİL TAŞCIOĞLU city hospital in Istanbul, which started admitting patients during the first week of the COVID-19 lockdown in Istanbul in 2020.
About Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) Group
Rated AAA by the major rating agencies of the world, the Islamic Development Bank is the multilateral development bank of the Global South that has been working for over 49 years to improve the lives of the communities it serves by bringing about change and impact at scale. It brings together 57 member countries across four continents, touching the lives of 1 out of 5 of the world's population. Its mission is to equip and empower people towards driving their own economic and social progress, putting the infrastructure in place and enabling them to fulfill their potential. Headquartered in Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, IsDB has regional hubs and a center of excellence in 11 of its Member Countries. Over the years, the Bank has evolved from a single entity into a group comprising six entities: the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB); the Islamic Development Bank Institute (IsDBI) tasked with research and training; the Islamic Corporation for the Insurance of Investment and Export Credit (ICIEC); the Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD); the International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation (ITFC), and the Islamic Solidarity Fund for Development (ISFD) which serves as IsDB Group’s poverty alleviation arm.