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The Deputy Secretary General (Acting Secretary General)

Ms. Atsuko Hirose became Deputy Secretary General of the Energy Charter Secretariat in September 2021 and the Acting Secretary-General on 13 February 2024. 

Ms. Hirose has over 30 years of international work experience in the government, the private sector and international organisations - in particular, she has 20 years of experience working at four international development financial institutions.

Most recently, Ms. Hirose was the Secretary and the Director, Office of the Secretary at the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), a United Nations agency headquartered in Rome, Italy. She was responsible for the relationship between IFAD and its member states, as well as the management and the operation of governance matters of IFAD's supervisory organs.

Prior to commencing her work at IFAD, Ms. Hirose worked at the legal department of many international financial institutions. She was Advisor at the Office of the General Counsel (OGC) of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) based in Manila, the Philippines, where she initially joined as the Assistant General Counsel for Private Sector Operations. She also served briefly as a Senior Legal Consultant at the OGC of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) in Beijing, China.

Prior to joining ADB, Ms. Hirose worked at the Hong Kong office of Conyers Dill & Pearman, an offshore law firm, where she was involved in corporate and financing transactions in Asia, including mergers and acquisitions, private equity, public listings, and investment funds.

Ms. Hirose was a Senior Counsel in the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) in London, where she acted as Team Leader in OGC. She was the lead counsel for numerous projects, with extensive involvement in structuring, negotiating and exiting loan and equity transactions.

Ms. Hirose worked as Senior Associate in Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP based in the New York, London and Tokyo offices and as Associate in O’Melveny & Myers LLP, USA, in the New York office.

Earlier in her career, she worked as Vice Consul in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan in New York, USA, and as Government Officer in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan in Tokyo, Japan.

Ms. Hirose obtained her Juris Doctor, Cum Laude, from Harvard Law School, USA. She obtained her Master of Science in Foreign Service from Georgetown University, USA; and her Bachelor of Arts in English Language and Literature from Ochanomizu University, Japan.

Ms. Hirose is qualified as Attorney in the State of New York and as Solicitor in England and Wales. She is also a Fellow of the Singapore Institute of Arbitrators and a Member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators in London.