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Who is Hafiza Arkan, the first woman to head the Central Bank of Turkey?


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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan appointed Dr. Hafiza Erkan as governor of the country’s central bank.

The Official Gazette published the presidential decree signed by Erdogan regarding the appointment of staff, according to what was reported by the Turkish Anatolia News Agency today, Friday.

Arkan became the first woman to hold the position of governor of the Central Bank of Turkey.

According to a brief biography published by the Anatolia News Agency, Arkan was born in Istanbul in 1982 and graduated from the University of Bosphorus, Department of Industrial Engineering in 2001, before completing her studies in the United States and obtaining a PhD in operations research and financial engineering from Princeton University.

Arkan obtained two educational programs, the first in the field of management science from Harvard Business School, and the second on leadership from Stanford University.

Arkan started her career in 2005 at the American “Goldman Sachs” financial and investment services institution and continued for 9 years, before moving to work at the “First Republic Bank” in 2014, for a period of 8 years.

Arkan also served as chairperson of the board of directors of “Tiffany & Co”, which is considered one of the largest American companies specializing in jewelry, before working in 2022 on the board of directors of the “Marsh McLennan” global financial advisory company included in the “Fortune 500” list issued by Fortune magazine and concerned with the classification of The 500 largest companies in the USA.

Arkan has significant experience in banking, investment, risk management, technology and digital innovation, and is a member of the advisory board of the Department of Operations Research and Financial Engineering at Princeton University.

And she assumes the position, as the inflation rate in Turkey approaches 40% and the Turkish national currency (the lira) declines to its lowest record levels, against the US dollar and the euro.

According to a Reuters report, Arkan’s directions are unclear, as she has no known direction in the official monetary policy, despite her successful career in the banking sector.