Switzerland's participation in the multilateral development banks

Switzerland is a member of various multilateral organisations. Apart from the multilateral development banks (MDBs), these also include several UN organisations and global funds. As a member of the MDBs, Switzerland has its own staff in the headquarters of the banks. These on-site offices are called Executive Director's Offices (EDOs).

At the end of each year, the Swiss representatives of the EDOs meet with the competent teams of the SECO, the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation and other federal agencies in Bern. Switzerland wants to actively shape the strategic and institutional orientation as well as the operational activities of the MDBs. The EDO staff is close to the decision-making in the banks' headquarters and represents Switzerland on the Boards of Directors of the MDBs (for more information see below «Swiss representation on Boards of Governors and Directors»).
This annual meeting in Bern is about sharing the experiences of the past year, defining priorities for the coming one and coordinating.

Through active participation in the MDBs’ governing bodies, Switzerland is helping to shape international cooperation.

Federal Councillor Guy Parmelin with Dominique Favre.
Federal Councillor Guy Parmelin with Dominique Favre (Alternate Executive Director at the World Bank Group) at the meeting of the members of Switzerland’s constituency at the Bretton Woods institutions in Bad Ragaz in July 2022.

Swiss representation on Boards of Governors and Directors

Due to the high number of members, each country cannot be individually represented on the Board of Directors of the MDBs. Member states are therefore divided into constituencies, each of which has an Executive Director representing the entire group on the Board. The Director’s office is called EDO. In the World Bank and the EBRD, Swiss Directors lead a constituency that includes a further eight and seven countries respectively. In the regional banks, Switzerland alternates with other members in leading a constituency. The Board of Directors is the second-highest body and is responsible for the Bank’s financing, functioning and operations.

The highest decision-making body of an MDB is its Board of Governors, which rules on major policy and strategic issues. Each member state is represented on the Board of Governors. At the World Bank, the EBRD and the AIIB, the Head of the Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research (EAER) acts as the Swiss Governor. At the lower level, the EAER also represents Switzerland on the Boards of Governors of the regional development banks.

Switzerland is a member of the following MDBs, in which it participates in the governing bodies:

Last modification 16.04.2024

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