Paul Noumba Um is the Regional Director of the World Bank’s Infrastructure Department in the Middle East and North Africa region. He is an infrastructure (energy, transport and water), telecommunications and private sector expert with over three decades of experience in infrastructure policy regulation and finance. He has advised governments, utility companies and private sector partners on energy security and efficiency, transportation, telecommunication, good governance, PPP and Privatization. Dr. Noumba Um has held technical and leadership roles within the World Bank – most recently as the Country Director for Southern Africa (South Africa, Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Namibia, Zambia, and Zimbabwe) and previously as the Country Director for Mali, Chad, Guinea, Central Africa Republic and Niger. He also served as the practice manager for Private Sector Development and finance for Western and Central Africa.
In the early 2000s, he led the Bank’s Infrastructure Regulation and Public Private Partnerships Capacity Building Program and held the first global Summit of PPP Units in 2006. Paul is a Cameroonian and French national based in Washington, D.C.; began his career in 1987 with government of Cameroon before moving to France to work with France Telecom (Orange Labs). Paul joined the Bank in 1998 in the then Energy, Mining, and Telecommunication Department and has since held positions with World Bank Institute, Middle East and North Africa, and after 2010, as Finance and Private Sector Development sector manager in Africa.
He has a PhD in Economics from Rennes University (1995), a Master’s Degrees in Engineering and Economics from IMT Atlantique (1987), France; a BA in Engineering from the Cameroonian National Post and Telecom School (1983), and an Executive Program Certificate in Managing Sustainability (Climate Change and Development) from University of Cambridge, UK.