Brussels The International Crisis Group (Crisis Group) congratulates its Trustee Lionel Zinsou on his appointment as Benin’s prime minister by President Thomas Boni Yayi.

Lionel Zinsou, a Crisis Group Trustee since 2012, will step down from his role as Chairman and Chief Executive of Paribas Affaires Industrielles (PAI Partners), one of Europe’s biggest capital investment funds, as he prepares for his new role in the West African nation of ten million. As head of its 28-member government, he will be in charge of economic development, evaluating public policy and promoting good governance in Benin.

Jean-Marie Guéhenno, Crisis Group President & CEO, said “Lionel Zinsou has devoted his professional life to bringing growth and jobs to Africa: his country recognises his contribution and will now directly benefit from it, as he becomes the prime minister of Benin”.

Crisis Group is an independent, non-profit, non-governmental organisation covering over 60 crisis-affected countries and territories across four continents, working through field-based analysis and high-level advocacy to prevent and resolve deadly conflict. Its Board of Trustees is the public face of the organisation, providing guidance and support on policy matters, advocacy, fundraising and other substantive issues.

Lionel Zinsou became chairman and chief executive officer of PAI in July 2009. Formerly a general partner at French bank Rothschild for eleven years, Lionel Zinsou started his professional career as a lecturer and professor of economics at Paris University and was a member of the French Department of Industry’s Ministerial office and of the Prime Minister’s Office (Laurent Fabius 1981-1986).

A citizen of France and Benin, nephew of a former president of Benin, Lionel Zinsou, as an economist, used to be a consultant at the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and at the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO). From 2006 to 2011, he served as special advisor to Benin’s president.

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