UN Names T-bird Special Adviser on Africa

Jul 06, 2020

United Nations Secretary‑General António Guterres announced today the appointment of Cristina Duarte of Cabo Verde as Special Adviser on Africa.

Ms. Duarte succeeds Bience Gawanas of Namibia, to whom the Secretary‑General is grateful for her commitment and dedicated service to the Organization.

Ms. Duarte brings to the position more than 34 years of leadership and strategic management experience in public policymaking and in the private sector, coupled with a deep understanding of international and regional cooperation and the challenges facing African countries.  She is a member of the United Nations Committee of Experts on Public Administration and High-Level Advisory Board on Economic and Social Affairs, President Paul Kagame’s Advisory Committee on African Union Reforms, the Board of the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa and the Board of the Institute of African Leadership for Sustainable Development at the UONGOZI Institute.

Ms. Duarte served as the Minister for Finance, Planning and Public Administration of Cabo Verde from 2006 to 2016.  Prior to this position, she was the Director of a World Bank project on a private sector development and competitiveness programme.

She has also served as Director for Planning and Studies in the Cabo Verde Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, and as an adviser to many international financial and non-governmental organizations, including the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), African Development Bank, World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Ms. Duarte joined Citibank in Kenya as Manager of Financial Institution Relationships and rose to become the Vice‑President, Country Corporate Officer and Head of Corporate and Investment Banking of Citibank in Angola.

She holds a master’s degree in business administration/international management from the American Graduate School of International Management/Thunderbird School of Global Management; an advanced diploma in business administration from the Economics Institute of the University of Colorado; and a Bachelor of Arts degree in public policies, planning and development from the Instituto Superior de Economia in Lisbon, Portugal.

Ms. Duarte is proficient in English, French, Italian and Portuguese.  She is married and has a daughter.




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