October 1, 2014 / 3:38 PM / 3 years ago

PROFILE-Tanzania's central bank governor Benno Ndulu

DAR ES SALAAM, Oct 1 (Reuters) - Position: Central Bank Governor Incumbent: Benno Ndulu Date of Birth: January 23, 1950 Term: Appointed January 8, 2008 Key Facts:

Ndulu was appointed central bank governor after the sacking of his predecessor, Daudi Ballali, in 2008 following widespread graft allegations at the institution. He has since worked to rebuild public trust and confidence in Tanzania's central bank.

He has presided over strong economic growth averaging 7 percent a year while bringing down the annual inflation rate to single digit levels from a peak of 20 percent in December 2011.

Ndulu is credited with implementing prudent policies and overseeing macroeconomic stabilisation that have underpinned Tanzania's strong economic performance over the past five years.

Analysts say major challenges facing the governor include reining in the country's external current account deficit, among the largest in the region at 14 percent of GDP in 2014. Preserving fiscal and debt sustainability as the country embarks on major infrastructure projects are other key challenges.

Ndulu has supported the expansion of financial inclusion by licensing more commercial banks, helping introduce agent banking and tapping into the growth of mobile financial services.

Under his stewardship, the central bank has licensed the country's first two credit reference bureaux in a bid to reduce risks of lending and boost credit to the private sector.

Ndulu, who has a doctorate from Northwestern University in the United States, was deputy governor for less than a year before he was made governor. He previously worked for the World Bank's macroeconomic division covering east Africa.

He has taught economics at the University of Dar es Salaam and helped set up the think tank African Economic Research Consortium. His research and teaching work covers macroeconomics, regional integration, trade and investments. (Writing Fumbuka Ng'wanakilala; Editing by Edmund Blair/James Macharia)

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