On 25 September 2014 United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA), Ms. Rima Khalaf, announced the appointment of Mr. Abdallah Al Dardari as her deputy. A national of Syria, Mr. Al Dardari, holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from Richmond – American International University of London (1985), a Master of Arts degree in International Economic Relations from the University of Southern California (1988). He undertook post graduate studies towards a Master of Philosophy in International Relations at the London School of Economics and Political Science between 1988 and 1990. He also holds an honorary doctorate from Yalova University in Istanbul. Over the past three years, Mr. Dardari served as the Chief Economist and the Director of the Economic Development and Globalization Division (EDGD) at ESCWA.
Under his leadership the division supported Arab efforts to deepen regional economic integration, and assisted member states in designing policies that would lead to inclusive growth, job creation, and human security. Recent examples include support to National Development planning initiatives in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, advisory services on trade and regional integration to member countries as well as the National Agenda for the Future of Syria Programme. Before joining ESCWA, Mr. Al Dardari was Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs from 2005 to 2011 and Minister of Planning and Chairperson of the State Planning Commission from 2003 to 2005. He also served as Assistant Resident Representative in the Syria office of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) between 2001 and 2003. He began his career as a journalist at Al-Hayat, a pan-Arab daily. Mr. Al Dardari has over ten years of experience as lecturer on the subjects of economics and international relations at various international institutions.