His newly created role, developed from a fusion of different elements within the International Federation, will concentrate on seeking funds for the Red Cross's wider fundraising network.
Drawing on his experiences in the UK, Hughes will work towards mobilising internal resources, so that the larger, more developed Red Cross communities lend support to smaller operations.
"This will take many different forms, but some of my work will look at how the different global divisions can work towards making our fundraising more effective," said Hughes.
"This could mean getting the British Red Cross to use its expertise to support Red Cross HIV projects in Africa, or to lend its support to a developing country looking to launch a regional fundraising programme."
He will also seek funds from external institutions such as the World Bank and the UN, and will seek to boost contributions from corporate partners.
"We've got such strong partnerships with major businesses in individual countries, and we need to work on getting their support on a global level," he said.
"Again, I'll be looking to liaise with individual organisations to see how this can be done, and the British Red Cross will have a major part to play in this whole process."
Since he joined the British Red Cross in 1998, Hughes has overhauled the fundraising structure of the charity. He developed its national fundraising and increased its work with corporate partnerships and major donors.
He also oversaw the complete restructuring of regional fundraising and events and launched initiatives such as the annual Open Gardens programme.
"In terms of global fundraising, the Red Cross is a sleeping giant which is ready to wake up," said Hughes. "In the years to come, we'll see the organisation come to have a greater influence."