Shamshad Akhtar is a Pakistani development economist, diplomat and intellectual who served as the caretaker Finance Minister of Pakistan. Prior to that, she served as the 14th Governor of the State Bank of Pakistan, the first woman to assume this position. She also served as a senior adviser to Secretary-General of the United Nations Ban Ki-moon and as Vice-President of the World Bank.
Akhtar was born in Hyderabad, Sindh, Pakistan. Akhtar had her earlier education at Karachi and Islamabad and graduated from the University of Punjab with a B.A. in 1974 followed by a M.Sc. in economics from Quaid-e-Azam University in 1975.
She moved to the United Kingdom as a Commonwealth Scholarship to study at the University of Sussex, receiving an M.A in development economics in 1977. She moved to the University of the West of Scotland (then Paisley College of Technology) where she was awarded a PhD in Economics in 1980.
Akhtar started her career in 1980 with the Planning Commission in Islamabad but moved few months later to work with the World Bank’s Resident Mission in Pakistan as a country economist. She left in 1986 for a year-long sabbatical to attend John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University as a postdoctoral researcher under the Fulbright Program.[failed verification]
In 1990, she moved to Manila to work as a senior economist for the Asian Development Bank and in 1996 and 1998 worked as Senior Financial Sector Specialist with the bank. In July 1996, she was promoted to Director and served as ADB representative to support ASEAN secretariat and in June 2002 she was promoted as the Director General of Asian Development Bank.
On 23 October 2007, Akhtar was conferred Best Central Bank Governor for Asia 2007 by the Euromoney Institutional Investor. On 11 November 2008, Akhtar was named amongst the top ten women leaders in Asia by The Wall Street Journal.
In 2009, she re-joined the Asian Development Bank as a senior advisor to Haruhiko Kuroda. She moved to Washington, D.C. to World Bank and served as the Vice President Middle East and North Africa. During this period she spearheaded the bank's response to the Arab Spring and the Arab regional integration strategy and its implementation. In September 2011, she moved to the United Nations to served as the Assistant Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs and Senior Adviser on Economic Development and Finance to the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. In December 2013, she was appointed as the 10th Executive Secretary of UNESCAP in Bangkok.
- "Secretary-General Appoints Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana as Executive Secretary, United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and Pacific | Meetings Coverage and Press Releases". www.un.org. United Nations. Retrieved 25 April 2019.
- "Biography of Executive Secretary Shamshad Akhtar | United Nations ESCAP". www.unescap.org. Retrieved 2017-01-13.
- "Secretary-General Appoints Shamshad Akhtar of Pakistan Executive Secretary of United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and Pacific". Press release. United Nations. 10 December 2013.
- "Secretary-General Appoints Shamshad Akhtar of Pakistan Executive Secretary of United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and Pacific | Meetings Coverage and Press Releases". www.un.org. Retrieved 2017-01-13.
- Ban Ki-moon okayed Dr Shamshad Akhtar for UN post
- "Former SBP governor appointed Executive Secretary UNESCAP – The Express Tribune". The Express Tribune. 2013-12-10. Retrieved 2017-01-14.
- http://www.thenews.com.pk/TodaysPrintDetail.aspx?ID=149227&Cat=2&dt=11/27/2008. Missing or empty
- "Biography of Executive Secretary Shamshad Akhtar". UNESCAP. Archived from the original on 17 Jan 2017. Retrieved 19 April 2019.
- "Dr Shamshad named first SBP woman governor". DAWN.COM. 2005-12-04. Retrieved 2017-01-13.
- "State Bank of Pakistan". www.sbp.org.pk. Retrieved 2017-01-13.
- "Dr Akhtar declared best central bank governor for Asia". www.thenews.com.pk. Retrieved 2017-01-13.
- "Dr Akhtar among top ten women in Asia". DAWN.COM. 2008-11-11. Retrieved 2017-01-14.
- "Ban Ki-moon okayed Dr Shamshad Akhtar for UN post". www.thenews.com.pk. Retrieved 2017-01-14.
- Akhtar, Shamshad (2010-10-25). "Shamshad Akhtar". World Bank Blogs. Retrieved 2017-01-13.
- Biography of Executive Secretary Shamshad Akhtar
- Shamshad Akhtar-Vice President, Middle East and North Africa Region
- "Executive Secretary Shamshad Akhtar | United Nations ESCAP". www.unescap.org. Retrieved 2017-01-13.
- Official website of State Bank of Pakistan
- Shamshad awarded “Best Central Bank Governor in Asia” prize
- Akhtar Named Pakistan's First Female Central Banker (Bloomberg)
- Shamshad visits native village for first time
|Governor of State Bank of Pakistan||Succeeded by|
Syed Salim Raza