Dr George Agyekum Donkor, the President and Chairman of the ECOWAS Bank for Investment and Development (EBID), has been awarded the prestigious Prix de la Fondation by the Crans Montana Forum at a ceremony in Geneva, Switzerland.
The Prix de la Fondation is awarded in recognition of an accomplished work and serves as a solemn encouragement.
A statement issued by EBID and copied to the Ghana News Agency on Monday said the award was presented to Dr Donkor by Prince Guillaume Jean Joseph Marie of Luxembourg and Crans Montana Founder and Chairman, Jean Paul Carteron.
It was an acknowledgement of his numerous contributions to the socio-economic development of the sub-region by spearheading strategic economic initiatives for job creation and dynamic leadership.
At a cocktail held at the Fairmont Hotel in Geneva, ahead of receiving the top award, Dr Donkor highlighted the global economic downturn created by the COVID-19 pandemic and the war in Ukraine.
“The whole world is in economic turmoil as a result of two external shocks, the COVID-19 pandemic and the war in Ukraine. As a result of these challenges, there have been escalating prices of food and energy and economies all over the world are suffering,” he said.
The EBID President said food and energy prices had gone up tremendously, which had affected the global commodity supply, resulting in price hikes.
Inflation was on the high side, especially evidenced in countries that had been experiencing low inflationary records like Japan.
“Japan had rather been fighting deflation but now they are also battling inflation,” he said.
Later in a presentation to the Crans Montana Forum, Dr Donkor said the ECOWAS Bank for International Development was more interested in the solutions than the challenges.
The Forum is a world leading international institution dedicated to public-private sector cooperation, which has become a meeting place for high level officials and top decision makers, including governments and businesses.
He called for a change in orientation and re-engineering of Ghana’s value system if it was to rise above the current economic circumstances.
“Unless there is a change within, there cannot be a change without,” the EBID President said, adding: “It is necessary to reinvent foreign policies and diplomatic action based on the necessary and unavoidable acceptance of the other.”
A lawyer and development banker by training, Dr Donkor’s career spans close to three decades, which had been a testament of people-centred leadership in a corporate setting.
Under his leadership, EBID has achieved remarkable successes including balance sheet growth of 22 per cent and 158 per cent oversubscription of its 2021 UEMOA (West African Economic and Monetary Union) bond issuance concluded within 24 hours, an indication of increased investor confidence.
Present at the ceremony were Mr Sidie Mohamed Tunis, Speaker of the ECOWAS Parliament, Mr Emmanuel Kwame Asiedu Antwi, Ghana’s Ambassador to Switzerland, and Mr Alexander Kwamina Afenyo-Markin, the Deputy Majority Leader of Parliament, who is also a member of the ECOWAS Parliament.
The EBID is a leading regional investment and development bank, owned by the 15 ECOWAS Member States.
Based in Lomé, Togo, the Bank is committed to financing developmental projects and programmes covering diverse initiatives from infrastructure and basic amenities, rural development and environment, industry, and social services sectors, through its private and public sector windows.