Incoming Resident Representative of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Wayne Mitchell, together with outgoing Monique Newiak, held an interactive session with management of the Ministry of Finance on Thursday, 16th February 2023, to acquit himself with the different departments of the ministry, what they do and how they can work together when he eventually takes over office.
Wayne Mitchell, who is a national of St. Lucia, joined the IMF in 2001 and has worked in many departments covering fragile, low-income, and emerging market economies in Africa, Europe, and the Caribbean.
In these countries, his involvement was assessing economic performance, monitoring IMF-supported economic programmes and providing economic policy advice.
During his tenure working in African countries as an Economist, he covered Lesotho, Uganda, Liberia, Rwanda, and Zimbabwe. He has also worked for 6 years as the IMF’s Resident Representative in Ghana (2009–2012) and in Antigua and Barbuda (2012–2015), where he covered the six independent countries of the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union.
Wayne’s other areas of interest and research are in public financial management, climate change, and financial sector development and inclusion in developing economies. Before joining the IMF in 2001, Wayne worked at the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank based in St. Kitts & Nevis and at the Ministry of Finance in St. Lucia.
In his brief statement, Wayne Mitchell thanked the outgoing res-rep Monique for her service in Sierra Leone by stating he has a huge job at hand, considering the effectiveness of his predecessor and the work she has done.
“I come with all of these experiences, but I have an open-door policy and will like to engage further to discuss how we can collaborate” he added.
Monique Newiak thanked the leadership of the Ministry of Finance and the Government of Sierra Leone for the collaboration, by stating that she is not saying goodbye yet because negotiations are still ongoing between the government and the fund. She assured the government that Wayne is bringing a lot of experience that will be useful in addressing the economic challenges at this critical time.
The Financial Secretary, Sahr Lahai Jusu who chaired the brief introductory meeting welcomed the incoming resident representative and thanked the outgoing. He highlighted some of the economic policy reforms the ministry has been implementing.
The Accountant General, The Principal Deputy Financial Secretary, the Chief Economist and all Directors gave brief statements on their functions and programmes.