London-born Kumar Iyer appointed director general for UKTI

India News Bulletin Desk

A newly created role to boost UK and India’s mutual trade has been filled by economist Kumar Iyer. London-born Iyer has been appointed as Director General for UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) to oversee UK-India commercial and trade relationship.

[Image1 Iyer will also be British Deputy High Commissioner for Western India and will move to India to start on his new roles from Monday, August 5.

Prior to becoming the director general of UKTI, Iyer has held several high-profile public se ctor roles in the UK. Most recently, he was a high-ranking official at the British Treasury and the Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit. 

He joined the British government in 2008 as deputy director at Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit. In 2010 he moved to the Treasury, first as deputy director, Strategy, Planning & Budget, and then as head of Financial Sector Interventions. Prior to that he was at the Boston Consulting Group where he worked mainly in the Financial Services Practice but also for large multinational media and retail clients. 

An MPhil in Economics from Cambridge University, Iyer was a Bank of England scholar and an undergraduate tutor in Microeconomics at the university. He was also a Kennedy Scholar and Teaching Fellow in International Capital Markets at Harvard University.

Looking forward to his posting, Mr Iyer said: “I am delighted to be appointed Director General for India of UKTI.

“Being an economist whose career has included management consulting in the private sector and working for the British Government both at Number 10 and the Treasury, it’s a great fit for the position, combined with being Deputy High Commissioner for Western India,” said Iyer of the new role.

His objective is to take the entire India-UK business relationship across the whole country to the highest possible level, he said.

Born in London to Indian parents, Iyer spent his childhood academic years in India.

“Having lived and studied in India whilst growing up, I am equally keen to play my part in promoting the academic, cultural and social links between our two countries.

A keen cricketer and chess player, Iyer is married to Kathryn, a barrister practising criminal law and the couple have two children, a son and a daughter.

“My wife and I are looking forward to building new friendships, travelling across India, and giving our children some exposure to their Indian heritage. I developed my passion for cricket while growing up in India and hope my children will too!” he concluded.

The director genera role at UKTI has been created by the British government to reflect the increasing importance of UK-India business ties.

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