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State Bank of Pakistan and Central Bank of Nigeria to Helm IFSB Chairmanship and Deputy Chairmanship for 2022

Date posted: 4 February 2022

4 February 2022, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia - The Council of the Islamic Financial Services Board (IFSB) resolved to appoint H.E. Dr. Reza Baqir, Governor of State Bank of Pakistan as the Chairman of the Council of the IFSB and H.E. Godwin Emefiele, Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria as the Deputy Chairman for 2022. H.E. Dr. Reza Baqir took over the Chairmanship of the IFSB from H.E. Khaled Mohamed Balama, Governor of Central Bank of the United Arab Emirates. 

Dr. Reza Baqir said that he felt deeply honoured to assume the Chairmanship of the Council of the IFSB. He thanked his fellow Council members for placing their trust in him. He also expressed his sincere gratitude to H.E. Khaled Mohamed Balama Al Tameemi, Governor Central Bank of the UAE for leading the Council during the year 2021 in an excellent manner. The Governor SBP expressed that with the support of his fellow Council Members, he aspires to help the IFSB realize its mandate and continue providing a high-quality intellectual guidance to global Islamic finance industry as envisaged in IFSB’s forward looking and ambitious Strategic Performance Plan 2022- 2024. He also pledged to transform the IFSB as one of the most progressive and robust standard setting body globally. 
H.E. Dr. Reza Baqir has previously served as the Deputy Chairman of the IFSB Council for the year 2021. Earlier, he has also been appointed as the Chairman of the IFSB General Assembly for the year 2022. 
Brief profile of the newly appointed Chairman and Deputy Chairman is as follows:
Dr. Reza Baqir was appointed as the Governor of the State Bank of Pakistan by the President of Pakistan on May 4, 2019, for a period of 3 years from the day he assumes the office of the Governor. He assumed his responsibilities on May 5, 2019.
In addition to his regular responsibilities overseeing financial and monetary stability in the country and promoting sustainable economic growth, Dr. Baqir has led several key new initiatives at the State Bank since assuming office. These include an aggressive, targeted, and timely economic support package in response to COVID-19; creation of the Roshan Digital Account initiative to digitally onboard Pakistan’s diaspora into Pakistan’s banking system and provide incentives to use formal channels to remit and invest in Pakistan; launch and implementation of the National Payments Strategy to promote the digitization of financial services in Pakistan including a faster payment system Raast; creation of a comprehensive program to promote construction and housing finance especially for low income segments of society; development of a dedicated policy to reduce the gender gap in financial inclusion called Banking on Equality, as well as several other initiatives.
Prior to this appointment, Dr. Baqir had eighteen years of experience with the IMF and two years of experience with the World Bank. He was the Head of the IMF's Office in Egypt and Senior Resident Representative since August 2017. 
Dr. Baqir's academic research has been published in top journals of the economics profession, including the Journal of Political Economy and the Quarterly Journal of Economics. Dr. Baqir holds a Ph.Dd in Economics from the University of California at Berkeley and an A.B. (Magna cum Laude) in Economics from Harvard University.
Mr. Godwin Emefiele is the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). Prior to his joining the CBN, he spent over 26 years in commercial banking culminating in his tenure as Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Zenith Bank PLC, one of Nigeria’s largest banks with over 7,000 staff, about US$3.2 billion in shareholders’ funds, and subsidiaries in Ghana, Sierra Leone, Gambia, South Africa, China, and the United Kingdom.
Under Emefiele’s leadership, Zenith Bank had strengthened its position as a leading financial institution in Africa, winning recognition and endorsement at home and abroad for giant strides in key performance areas like corporate governance, service delivery and deployment of cutting-edge ICT.
Before his banking career, he was a lecturer in Finance and Insurance in two Nigerian Universities. Mr. Emefiele holds degrees in Banking and Finance from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, and is also an alumnus of Stanford University, Harvard and Wharton Graduate Schools of Business where he took courses in Negotiation, Service Excellence, Critical Thinking, Leading Change and Strategy.

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