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H.E DR JEAN PING
CHAIRPERSON Of THE AFRICAN UNION COMMISSION
Date and Place of Birth: 24 November 1942 in Omboué, (Etimbwé), Gabon
Qualifications: Ph.D in Economic Sciences from the University of Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne. He holds two honorary doctorates from the Institute of Diplomacy in China and from the Institute of African Studies and Academy of Sciences in Moscow. He also holds an MPhil and a B.Sc, Economic Sciences from the University of Paris.
From 1972 Mr. Ping worked at UNESCO in Paris as an international civil servant in the Department of External Relations. From 1978 to 1984, he was Permanent Representative of Gabon to UNESCO. His diplomatic and political experience earned him the appointment by the Head of State, to the post of Director of the civilian staff, a post he occupied from 1984- 1990. In 1990, Mr. Ping embarked on a long government career path during which he successively occupied numerous high ranking positions. From 26 February to 29 April 1990 Mr. Ping served as Minister of Information, Posts and Telecommunications, Tourism and Leisure, Reform of the Semi- Public Sector, Responsible for relations with the parliament and spokesperson for the government. From April of 1990 to June 1991, and then from August 1992 to 24 March 1994, Mr. Ping served as Minister of Mines, Energy and Water Resources. He occupied the post of Minister of Foreign Affairs, Cooperation and Francophony from 25 March to 20 October 1994 and served as Minister of State reporting to the Minister of Finance, Economy, Budget and Privatization, positions that he occupied from 30 October 1994 to 25 January 1997. Mr. Ping pursued his government career as Minister of Planning, Environment and Tourism, duties he discharged from 27 January 1997 to 25 January 1999, when he was appointed Senior Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Cooperation and Francophony of the Gabonese Republic. From 2007 till his appointment as AUC Chairperson, Mr. Ping was Vice Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Cooperation and Francophony and Regional Integration.
He has led the Gabonese delegations to many African and international forums especially those of UNESCO, OAU, AU, Non Aligned Movement, Organisation of Islamic Conference and the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries. Mr. Ping also led his country’ delegations to meetings of the World Bank, Summits of the Francophony, as well as to those of the Africa Caribbean Pacific- European Union (ACP-EU). He discharged of highly important duties as Head of Delegation to the Summits of the Central African Customs and Economic Union, the Economic and Monetary Community of Central African States, and to NEPAD. At the international level, Mr. Ping’s experience was demonstrated at the China- Africa Forum, at the Third Tokyo International Conference on African Development and to US- Africa conferences organised within the framework of the Africa Growth Opportunity Act (AGOA). He was the President of the 59th Session of the United Nations General Assembly.
Marital status: Married with children