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The foundation’s Middle East team, based in London, works to address pressing needs in Arab countries and helps strengthen the role of Middle Eastern donor countries and philanthropists in global health and development.

Leadership

Asif Abbas
Head of Middle East Relations

Asif Abbas is responsible for the foundation’s Middle East strategy across program areas. He also oversees the foundation’s relationships with the government of Pakistan.

Asif joined the Gates Foundation in 2018, and examples of work in his portfolio include engaging gulf donor countries to support health systems strengthening in LDCs and LMICs, raising funding for polio eradication, and partnering with governments in multi-sector poverty alleviation programs. He is also responsible for developing bilateral partnerships with donor governments in the Middle East, focusing on a broad range of topics including agricultural research to improve food security, and sanitation innovations for displaced persons.

Prior to joining the foundation, Asif had a 10-year career as a management consultant working across Europe and the Middle East. He led projects across multiple industries, including the public sector, and is an expert in business strategy and organizational transformation.

Asif has a BSc in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics from the University of Warwick.

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