WASHINGTON, USA – Carlos Felipe Jaramillo, an economist and development expert with almost two decades of experience at the World Bank Group, has been appointed vice president for Latin America and the Caribbean Region, effective July 1, 2020. Jaramillo will manage Bank relations with 31 countries and a portfolio of ongoing projects, technical assistance and grants of almost US$32 billion.
Jaramillo will lead the Bank’s unprecedented response to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) crisis in the region. The pandemic has hit Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) hard. Millions of people are facing serious social, economic, and public policy implications. The poorest and most vulnerable people will suffer the most and it is crucial to do everything possible to mitigate that impact.
“The World Bank Group will play a critical and constructive role in our region’s recovery,” said Felipe Jaramillo, World Bank vice president for Latin America and the Caribbean region. “We must rethink the future, not just go back to the same normal as before. That means making the changes needed to fuel growth, reduce poverty, and protect the environment.”
The World Bank quickly mobilized to support the health, social and economic response to the coronavirus pandemic. Around US$700 million was quickly deployed in 14 countries in LAC to acquire gloves, masks, respirators, and other critical medical supplies. Over the next 15 months, the World Bank’s assistance to developing countries will reach US$160 billion.
Much of this will benefit governments in the LAC to better deal with the emergency.
Social protection programs will be more necessary than ever to help the poorest people and informal workers. Efforts must be made to preserve jobs and prevent those who recently climbed up to join the middle class from falling back down into poverty.
Prior to his current role, Mr. Jaramillo was the World Bank country director for Kenya, Rwanda, Somalia and Uganda, based in Nairobi. He was also senior director of the World Bank Group’s Macroeconomics, Trade and Investment Global Practice (MTI), where he led a global team of more than 450 economists. Since joining the World Bank in 2002, he served two terms as country director in the Latin America and Caribbean region.
“It is an honor and privilege to be returning to the LAC region at this time to help our countries face the enormous challenges ahead,” Jaramillo said.
Jaramillo is a Colombian citizen. Prior to joining the Bank, he was a public servant in the Government of Colombia, holding offices in the ministry of finance, the central bank, the national planning department and the ministry of trade.
Jaramillo holds an M.A. and a PhD. in development economics from Stanford University. He has taught at the Department of Economics of the Universidad de Los Andes in Bogota and at the University of Maryland, College Park.