New VP proposed

By Anthony Williams

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President Thomas Mirow has proposed that Jan Fischer, Prime Minister of the Czech Republic, be appointed EBRD Vice President, Operational Policies.
 Mr Fischer would replace Brigita Schmögnerova whose term as Vice President ends on 31 August, 2010. The Board of Directors, which represents the EBRD’s shareholders, will decide on the President’s proposal at a Board meeting on 6 May.

In making his proposal, President Mirow underscored Mr Fischer’s experience as a successful and popular Prime Minister of a country with long-standing links to the EBRD. He also referred to his intensive involvement in European affairs within the European Council.
 This made him very well suited for developing high level relations with the authorities of the countries where the EBRD invests, which is part of the remit of the Vice Presidency, Operational Policies.
 President Mirow added, “Mr Fischer has a strong personal commitment to environmental and sustainability issues, and to the gender action initiatives of the Bank. He is a firm believer in the importance of civil society engagement and the importance of constructive relationships between civil society groups and the Bank.”

The Vice Presidency, Operational Policies, has overall responsibility for the formulation and delivery of the Bank’s policies regarding the areas of the environment and sustainability, which are key to the EBRD’s mandate.

In addition, the Vice President, Operational Policies, coordinates the preparation of the EBRD’s strategies for investments in each of its countries of operation.

The position also covers procurement matters within the EBRD’s Banking operations and oversees the Bank’s Stakeholder Relations Department covering the Donor Co-Financing; Civil Society Engagement Unit; Gender Action Initiatives; and, the Bank’s political advisory function.

The Vice President, Operational Policies, will, moreover, gradually take over responsibility for the Bank’s Nuclear Safety Unit which aims to improve the operational safety of nuclear plants and enhance regulatory regimes in this area.

Mr Fischer was appointed Prime Minister of the Czech Republic in April 2009. After successfully concluding the Czech Presidency of the European Council he then guided the country as it dealt with the impact of the global economic crisis.

Prior to taking over as head of the government, Mr Fischer had spent six years as President of the Czech Statistical Office, an organisation with which he had enjoyed a long and successful association.

Born in Prague on 2 January, 1951, and married with three children, Mr Fischer has a Masters and a PhD from the Economic University of Prague. After research at the Institute for Social and Economic Information in Prague, he moved to the Statistical Office in 1982 where he was appointed Vice President in 1990 and First Vice President in 1999.

Between 2000 and 2003 he held various positions including a period as a technical expert to the International Monetary Fund before returning to the Statistical Office in April 2003 as President.

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