Principal Socio-Economist at African Development Bank
“Development is in her DNA” – this is how Gehane El Sokkary is described!
Of her 30+ years of professional life, Ms El Sokkary has spent more than 25 years working in development in Africa, with multilateral and bilateral development institutions. For the past 13 years she has been working with the premier development institution in Africa – the African Development Bank- where her main focus is on social and economic development. She has designed and managed a portfolio of almost USD 1 Billion for projects in Egypt, Tunisia and Libya, and has been involved with social projects in Mozambique, Sudan and Madagascar amongst other countries. Most notably, she led the USD 500 Million budget support operation to Tunisia following the Arab Spring, and participated in the USD 1.5 Billion multi-year budget support operation for Egypt, in 2016.
Committed to the concept of inclusive development, Gehane’s understands the need to work at all three levels simultaneously: the policy level providing guidance and advisory services; the institutional level to build national capacities; and the end-beneficiary level providing much needed services. The projects she has managed have empowered women, supported small-holder farmers from rural Upper Egypt along several value-chains, as well as promoted start-ups and young entrepreneurs as they engage in innovative social enterprises. Cognizant of the importance of health and education sectors, Gehane has also engaged closely with the Ministry of Higher Education to transform technical education into technological education in line with the 4th Industrial Revolution. In the health sector, Gehane mobilized resources for the actuarial study based on which the National Health Insurance Law was issued, thereby allowing universal health coverage to all Egyptians. In the area of urban planning and development, Gehane mobilized resources to support the work related to informal settlements. At times of crises, such as the flooding of Alexandria and COVID19, Gehane mobilized resources and designed emergency response projects to assist the most vulnerable and those mostly affected by the crises.
Prior to the AfDB, Gehane El Sokkary worked with the UNDP in Sudan where she was involved in the Darfur Crisis and assisted on the support program to the Peace Treaty. She has also worked as a consultant on USAID and EU financed projects in the areas of privatization, financial restructuring, export promotion and agriculture development. Ms El Sokkary is a holder of a Master’s Degree in Development from the AUC, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science and French from Middlebury College, USA. She is proficient in English, French, Arabic and Spanish.