Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia is an economist and banker of international distinction and repute. His political pedigree in the Danquah-Busia tradition goes back to the very foundations of the United Party from which the New Patriotic Party draws inspiration.
He was born on October 7, 1963 in Tamale to the late Alhaji Mumuni Bawumia, former Chairman of the Council of State (1992-2000) and Hajia Mariama Bawumia. He was the twelfth of his father’s 18 children and the second of his mother’s five.
After graduating from Tamale Secondary School, Mahamudu proceeded to the United Kingdom where he obtained the Chartered Institute of Bankers Diploma (ACIB). He then undertook undergraduate study at Buckingham University, obtaining a First Class Honours Degree in Economics in 1987; a Masters Degree in Economics at Oxford University in 1988; and a Ph.D. in Economics in 1995 at the Simon Fraser University in Canada. His areas of specialization include Macroeconomics, International Economics, Development Economics and Monetary Policy.
Between 1998 and 2000, Dr. Bawumia worked as a lecturer in Monetary Economics, and International Finance at the Emile Woolf College of Accountancy in London and also served as an Assistant Professor of Economics at Baylor University, Texas, USA. He also served as an economist at the Research Department of the International Monetary Fund in Washington, DC, USA.
Dr. Bawumia returned to Ghana in 2000 to work as an economist at the Bank of Ghana. He rose through the ranks from Senior Economist to Head of Department, and subsequently as Special Assistant to the Governor of the Bank. President J.A. Kufuor appointed Dr. Bawumia as Deputy Governor of the Bank of Ghana in June 2006, aged 42.
As the Deputy Governor in charge of financial stability, he successfully maintained oversight over the soundness of the banking sector. He was instrumental in the opening up of the banking sector to competition, resulting in the increase in the availability of credit to the private sector from 12.5% of GDP in 2001 to 28.5% of GDP in 2008. Dr Bawumia also led Bank of Ghana’s technical negotiation team with the World Bank and IMF that successfully ended Ghana’s dependence on IMF assistance, allowing Ghana to pursue more independent policies.
Dr Bawumia was responsible for drafting the financial sector component of the Millennium Challenge Account Compact which resulted in $547 million worth of projects for Ghana. He was also responsible for the strategy for accessing the international capital markets with a debut $750 million dollars, which was four times oversubscribed. He was part of the team that designed and implemented the successful redenomination of the cedi which has been hailed globally, and played a key role in the design and implementation of the e-zwich common platform for all banks, savings and loans companies and rural banks. More recently, with the African Development Bank, he has played a leading role in helping Zimbabwe to re-engage with the international community. He is married to Samira and they have three children.