In a first, a diplomat of Indian origin is being appointed as deputy high commissioner at the British mission in Mumbai.
Kumar Iyer will also be director general for UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) for all of India, a new top-level post that has been created to reflect the increasing importance of UK-India business ties.
He will take up both positions, based in Mumbai, on August 5.
As deputy high commissioner western region, Iyer will have responsibility of all aspects of diplomatic engagement in Maharashtra, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Goa. As director general India of UKTI, he will be responsible for the UK-India commercial and trade relationship across the country.
He comes to India from London, where he has been a high-ranking official at the British Treasury and the Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit.
Iyer has an MPhil in Economics from Cambridge University, where he was a Bank of England scholar and an undergraduate tutor in Microeconomics. He was also a Kennedy Scholar and Teaching Fellow in International Capital Markets at Harvard University.
He was born in London to parents of Indian origin. He spent his formative years in India, including time in Mumbai. He joined the British government in 2008 as deputy director, Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit.
“I am very excited at the prospect of living and working in Mumbai: it is the financial and commercial capital of India and is a city that reflects the boundless energy and talent that is so evident across the country.
Having lived and studied in India while growing up, I am keen to play my part in promoting the academic, cultural and social links between our two countries. My wife and I are looking forward to becoming part of the wider Mumbai community and giving our children exposure to their Indian heritage,’’ Iyer said.