Prize Committee Biography

Horst Köhler

Horst Köhler is an economist and politician, who served as Federal President of Germany between 2004 and 2010. Prior to this role, he served as the Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) from 2000 to 2004, and was President of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) from 1998 to 2000.

As State Secretary in the Ministry of Finance from 1990 to 1994 he negotiated the withdrawal of Soviet troops from Eastern Germany and was Germany’s main negotiator for the European Monetary Union.

Horst Köhler continues to serve in a number of honorary positions both nationally and internationally. From 2012 to 2013, he was member of the UN Secretary General’s High Level Panel of Eminent Persons on the post-2015 Agenda.

In August 2017, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres appointed President Köhler his Personal Envoy for Western Sahara, a position he held until May 2019.