President Juan Manuel Santos announced Monday that Colombia’s former finance minister will be the country’s next representative to the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB).
Juan Carlos Echeverry, who served as Minister of Finance under Santos until August of 2012, will be replacing Roberto Prieto, an international economist and the former director of Santos’ Good Government foundation, which recently became his campaign center.
“The ex-Minister of Finance Juan Carlos Echeverry will be the new representative in the IADB,” wrote Santos on his official Twitter. “Thanks to Roberto Prieto for his magnificent work.”
El ex ministro de hacienda Juan Carlos Echeverry será el nuevo representante en el BID. Gracias Roberto Prieto por magnífica labor.
— Juan Manuel Santos (@JuanManSantos) July 29, 2013
As Colombia’s Executive Director in the IADB, Echeverry will occupy a shared seat on the Executive Board in Washington, DC, alongside Peruvian representative Kurt Burneo, and will oversee the work of current Finance Minister Mauricio Cardenas, who holds Colombia’s voting position in the Governor’s Assembly.
It is the Governor’s Assembly that ultimately makes decision regarding the Bank’s operations, while the Executive Board — overseen by another Colombian, IADB President Luis Alberto Moreno — is charged with carrying out the Assembly’s decisions and the Bank’s basic day-to-day functions.
A founding member of IADB, Colombia receives $3.14 billion in annual aid from the bank, which it uses on projects ranging from potable water development, to construction of basic infrastructure, to improvements in national health care, and represents 4.5% of the total voting power in the body.
Echeverry has experience dealing with the Bank from his time as Minister of Finance, which is typically the position that coordinates the implementation of IADB funds locally. He has not made any comments regarding his plans for Colombia’s involvement with the organization.