Makhtar Diop, incoming managing director and executive vice president leading at the International Finance Corporation. Photo by: World Bank / CC BY-NC-ND

More than four months after Philippe Le Houérou stepped down from his post, the International Finance Corporation has a new leader — Makhtar Diop.

Diop is IFC’s first African leader and comes to the institution after a long career at the World Bank, where he is currently serving as vice president for infrastructure.

The move could be an effort to improve coordination and cooperation between IFC and the bank, and a statement from the bank said that Diop will be charged with strengthening linkages “as the World Bank Group accelerates efforts aimed at boosting good development outcomes in client countries.”

Diop will take the helm at IFC on March 1 and will oversee IFC’s 3.0 strategy launched in 2018 and its capital increase. That includes efforts to boost investments in the world’s poorest and most fragile countries, and IFC’s work to create investable projects with its “upstream” work. 

The World Bank Group board approved a $5.5 billion capital increase for IFC in 2018, which the U.S. Congress authorized in 2020. The capital increase will allow the IFC to double its annual investments to about $48 billion by 2030 and will push the institution to triple its annual investments in the world’s lowest-income and most fragile countries, according to IFC.

Diop, who was Senegal’s minister of economy and finance between 2000-2001, started his career in banking, worked at the International Monetary Fund, and has been at the World Bank for some 20 years. He was the World Bank’s vice president for the Africa region for six years, was director for finance, private sector, and infrastructure in the Latin America and Carribean region and also served as World Bank country director in Brazil and Kenya, Eritrea, and Somalia.

Diop also plays the bass guitar and once played in an IMF jazz band.

About the author

  • Adva Saldinger

    Adva Saldinger is a Senior Reporter at Devex, where she covers the intersection of business and international development, as well as U.S. foreign aid policy. From partnerships to trade and social entrepreneurship to impact investing, Adva explores the role the private sector and private capital play in development. A journalist with more than 10 years of experience, she has worked at several newspapers in the U.S. and lived in both Ghana and South Africa.