World Bank Malawi country head winds up tour of duty

After a distinguished service, Sandra Bloemenkamp, World Bank Country Manager for Malawi is leaving the country after ending her three-year tour of duty in the Warm Heart of Africa.

The country manager, a Dutch national, has headed the Bank’s office in the Southern African nation since 2010.

Speaking at a farewell party at her residence in the capital, Lilongwe, Bloemenkamp said she was leaving Malawi a satisfied person having contributed to bringing the country’s economy back after a trying moment.

She said in as far as the World Bank was concerned, the President Joyce Banda’s administration has tried in its few months in power as signs were clear that the economy was on its recovery path.

Bloemkamp: Leaving
Bloemenkamp: Leaving

“Things are getting better now than they were when she took over government. We all saw in 2011 that all indicators were moving towards wrong direction but things have now started changing for the better.

“It will take sometime for everybody to start benefitting from the reforms currently in place but certainly the country is getting better,” said Bloemenkamp.

Bloemenkamp will be heading for Washington DC, United States of America (USA), where she will be stationed at the Bank’s headquarters.

A cross section of diplomatics, senior government officials as well as cabinet ministers and business gurus were part of the farewell party.

Taking his turn, Minister of Finance, Ken Lipenga, who has worked with Bloemenkamp very closely over the last few months, said Malawi will ever remember the passion the outgoing country manager had for Malawi.

Lipenga said the World Bank, through Bloemenkamp, contributed greatly on the country’s economic reforms that have now started showing signs of revival.

Bloemenkamp, who speaks Dutch, English, French, German and Russian, joined the World Bank in 1991 as advisor to the Bank’s Executive Director for the Netherlands.

Prior to joining the Bank, she worked at the Ministry of Finance in the Netherlands as a financial sector advisor.

She was appointed World Bank Country Manager for Malawi in January 2010 and has led her team in policy dialogue with the Government of Malawi, developing country assistance strategies, and overseeing overall implementation of country programs.

Bloemenkamp, a holder of Master of Law Degree, currently oversees a Malawi project portfolio of about $900 million, with a new CAS that will run till 2017.

Her work experience in the Bank spans across Central Asia, Europe and Africa where, among others, she has done country management, overall program coordination and portfolio management.

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