PORT VILA, VANUATU (23 August 2018) — Asian Development Bank (ADB) Vice-President Mr. Stephen Groff will visit Vanuatu on 26-28 August to discuss ADB’s continued support to the country’s development and inaugurate ADB’s Extended Mission in Vanuatu (EMVAN).Mr. Groff will meet Vanuatu’s Prime Minister Mr. Charlot Salwai, Minister of Finance and Economic Management and ADB Governor Mr. Gaetan Pikioune, and other senior government officials and development partners to discuss ADB’s work in infrastructure improvement, private sector development, economic management, and energy. Mr. Groff will look for opportunities to further strengthen ADB’s Vanuatu country program and visit project sites.
Mr. Groff, who assumed office in October 2011, is responsible for the full range of ADB’s operations in East Asia, Southeast Asia, and the Pacific. His mandate includes establishing strategic and operational priorities in his areas of responsibility, producing investment and technical assistance operations amounting to approximately $5 billion annually, managing an existing portfolio of about $31 billion, and leading about 650 staff.
In addition, Mr. Groff supports the ADB President in managing ADB’s overall operations, represents ADB in high-level multilateral fora, and contributes to managing its relationships with its 67-member country shareholders, other multilateral financial institutions, and key government, private sector, and civil society partners.
Prior to joining ADB, Mr. Groff was Deputy Director for Development Cooperation at the Paris-based Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) where he led OECD’s work on a wide range of development-related economic and political issues. He also served as OECD’s envoy to the G20 Working Group on Development and was a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council. Prior to this, he was the Deputy Vice-President for Operations at the Washington-based Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), where he helped set up the agency and led MCC programs while advising the CEO on development issues, strategy, and policy. Prior to MCC, Mr. Groff held several staff positions at ADB. Before this, Mr. Groff was the deputy director and chief economist on a large U.S. Agency for International Development project designed to encourage private sector development in the southern part of the Philippines, a Program Director for the U.S. Refugee Program, and a U.S. Peace Corps Volunteer.
Mr. Groff has worked across Asia, Africa, and Latin America and writes regularly on development issues. He also serves on a number of advisory boards for development-related organizations. He holds a Master’s degree in Public Administration from Harvard University and a Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Biology from Yale University.
ADB began working with the Government of Vanuatu in 1981, and has since approved 16 loans totaling $95.96 million, 14 grants worth $83.41 million in total, and 69 technical assistance projects worth $23.05 million.
ADB is committed to achieving a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Asia and the Pacific, while sustaining its efforts to eradicate extreme poverty. Established in 1966, it is owned by 67 members—48 from the region. In 2017, ADB operations totaled $32.2 billion, including $11.9 billion in cofinancing.