Director-General, Department of ASEAN Affairs
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Thailand
Miss Usana Berananda is Director-General, Dapartment of ASEAN Affairs of Thailand. She formerly served as Deputy Director-General and Director of Political-Security Division of the ASEAN Department. She was also appointed as Deputy Permanent Representative, Permanent Mission of Thailand to the WTO. Before working with the WTO, Miss Usana was a Minister Counsellor and Head of Consular Section Royal Thai Embassy in Seoul. She holds a M.A. in Strategic Studies from the Australian National University, and B.A. in International Relations from Thammasat University.
Birgit Hansl, a German national, is the World Bank Country Manager for Thailand since November 2018.Prior to this position, she was based in Manila as the Lead Economist and Program Leader for Equitable Growth, Finance and Institutions for Brunei, Malaysia, Philippines and Thailand. In this role, she oversaw a large program focused on fiscal reforms, competition policy, trade and customs modernization, public financial management reforms, digital economy policy and financial sector reforms. Her work in the Philippines also supported fragile and conflict-affected areas in Mindanao where she led the World Bank Mindanao Jobs Report and developed a strategy for regional development.
Since joining the Bank in 2005 through the Young Professionals Program, Birgit worked for the World Bank’s programs in Asia, Africa, and Europe. Before joining the Bank’s Manila-based team, she worked as the Moscow-based Lead Economist and Program Leader for Equitable Growth, Finance and Institutions for the Russian Federation in the Europe and Central Asia region. There, she strategically shaped and managed a large knowledge-based program that focused on analytical work, Reimbursable Advisory Services and technical assistance.
She is an experienced economist in the World Bank’s Macro-Fiscal Management Global Practice, with special interest in in macroeconomic modelling and forecasting, growth and productivity analysis, trade diagnostic, and public finance and institution building.
Prior to joining the World Bank, Birgit worked in academics from 1997-2005, including the London School of Economics, the University of Witwatersrand in South Africa, the Humboldt University of Berlin, and the University of San Francisco. She also worked for a number of bilateral and multilateral organizations, including the United Nations Development Program, the British Department for International Development and the World Health Organization.
Birgit holds a Ph.D. and Master of Arts Degree in Economics from the London School of Economics. She completed a Post-Doctoral Fellowship at the University of California San Francisco and Berkeley. She also holds a Masters’ degree in Economics from the Humboldt University Berlin.