AfDB Appoints Nourredine Lafhel as Acting Chief Risk Officer

By Adedapo Adesanya

The African Development Bank Group (AfDB) has announced the appointment of Mr Nourredine Lafhel as acting Chief Risk Officer (CRO) of the Abidjan based institution effective April 6, 2020.

According to the bank, Mr Lafhel, who is a Canadian national, held the post of Sovereign Credit and Market Risk Division Manager (PGRF3), in the Directorate of the Group Risk Management Function of the lender.

An experienced risk management professional, his careers spans over two decades in finance and risk management and is a proven leader in the development of innovative solutions and strategies for balance sheet optimization, capital adequacy and market risk management.

With a work experience that covers several continents, including North America, Middle East and Africa, Mr Lafhel as Division Manager has extensive experience in reviewing market risk, sovereign portfolio reports, sovereign credit policy and the Bank’s credit policy and graduation.

AfDB noted that the appointee has been instrumental in defining its economic capital requirements for market, credit and operational risk. In particular, he was part of the team that developed the Room2Run initiative – the bank’s innovative $1 billion synthetic securitisation deal.

Before joining the bank, Mr Lafhel held senior treasury and credit risk roles at S&P Global Ratings as Director, Sovereign and International Public Finance Rating, and as Senior Director, Credit Risk Management & Rating at Acreditus, in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

In these roles, the bank’s new CRO provided strategic advice, policy guidance and analytical support to MENA sovereign entities in the area of capital markets, credit risk management and ratings on confidential basis.

Prior to this, he served at the Bank of Canada as a Principal Credit Risk officer, where he was responsible for the implementation of the internal rating methodologies and scorecards of sovereigns, GREs, supranational institutions, and banks. He led credit risk assessments and internal ratings of investment and trading counterparties.

Mr Lafhel is fluent in French, English and Arabic, and holds a Master’s Degree in Applied Finance from the University of Quebec at Montreal – ESG School of Management, Canada and a Bachelor (Honours) in Financial Management from the Faculty of Law, Economics and Social Sciences, at University Hassan II of Casablanca in Morocco.

Speaking on the appointment, Mr Akinwumi Adesina, President of AfDB, said, “Nourredine is an experienced and well-respected professional who has played an active role in the Bank’s asset liability management and credit risk committees.

“He has provided critical technical direction in the development of innovative solutions and strategies for balance sheet optimization including sovereign exposure exchange agreement, sovereign risk transfer, Room2Run and the AFAWA risk sharing mechanism.”

“I am confident that Nourredine will continue to provide critical leadership and innovation to ensure that we maintain our triple A rating,” he added.

Adedapo Adesanya is a journalist, polymath, and connoisseur of everything art. When he is not writing, he has his nose buried in one of the many books or articles he has bookmarked or simply listening to good music with a bottle of beer or wine. He supports the greatest club in the world, Manchester United F.C.

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