Ambassador Michael B. CHRISTIDES was born in Thessaloniki,
Greece in 1949; he joined the Hellenic Ministry of Foreign Affairs
in 1976 as first in his Class and served with distinction until his
retirement in August 2014. Among other assignments he served as
Ambassador of Greece to Bulgaria, to Türkiye and to Argentina
and held senior posts in the Hellenic MFA as Political Director for
South East Europe, as Director General for International
Organizations, and as Director General for International Economic
He participated in many international meetings and conferences and has spent more than 20
years dealing with S.E. European / Balkan issues, while travelling extensively in the region.
He acquired a broad knowledge of the political and economic realities there and established
a wide personal network of high-level political, business, academic and media contacts. He
speaks fluent English, German, French, Italian and moderately good Spanish.
Following his retirement Ambassador Christides was elected by the Council of Ministers of
Foreign Affairs of the Organization of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation (BSEC) as
Secretary General of the latter’s Permanent International Secretariat (PERMIS),
headquartered in Istanbul, assuming his duties on 1 July 2015. He was unanimously
reappointed for a second three year term-in-office, which ended on 30 June 2021. It is widely
acknowledged that under his guidance the BSEC Organization matured into a trustworthy
and sought-after partner and interlocutor on the international scene, becoming the cardinal
point of reference in the wider Black Sea area in what concerns regional cooperation and
Today he is actively engaged with:
(a) Thessaloniki Innovation & Technology Center (Thess-INTECS), Advisory Board
As of November 2021, he is a member of the Advisory Board, responsible for International
Relations of the above Center.
(b) Balkan & Black Sea Forum, Organizing Committee
From February 2022 he is the Co-Chair of the Organizing Committee of this platform.
(c) Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) Black Sea, Leadership Council
He is a member of the Leadership Council of the above Network, headquartered at the
Aristotle University of Thessaloniki.