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Aakif Merchant

Aakif Merchant

Director, Engagement & Capacity Building

As Director, Engagement & Capacity Building at Convergence, Aakif works with key stakeholders, such as governments, development finance institutions, and commercial investors, to mainstream blended finance across investment, portfolio management, and policy. To this end, he has worked closely with UNDP, Sweden International Development Agency, Global Affairs Canada, African Development Bank, Private Infrastructure Development Group, Africa Guarantee Fund, the Governments of Switzerland, Indonesia and Ethiopia, and others.

Aakif serves as an Advisory Group Member of the Ethiopia-Canada Blended Finance Initiative and is a Lecturer and Advisory Board member at the Initiative for Blended Finance at the University of Zurich.

He has spoken on international development finance issues at major events including the OECD Private Finance for Development Conference, East Africa Banking Forum, Green Climate Fund Private Investment for Climate Conference, Latin American Impact Investing Forum, and Sankalp Africa Forum. Aakif has also written about international development finance for numerous publications.

He holds an MBA from the University of Toronto and a BA in Economics and Politics from George Washington University.

Aakif is currently based in Kigali, Rwanda and has worked across a range of countries including Ethiopia, Indonesia, Colombia, Kenya, India, Switzerland, Tanzania, Sweden and Jordan among others.