Nisha Desai Biswal appointed president of the U.S.-India Business Council (USIBC)
Since the Modi visit in US, the board vote, the Chamber has dismissed Aghi ... Washington Post
Washington, Oct 11, 2017
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- 2014 to 2017, Assistant Secretary, Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs
- Previously, Biswal worked as Assistant Administrator for Asia at US Agency oversaw more than $1 billion US assistance to 22 countries
Nisha Desai Biswal, former U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia, has been appointed president of the U.S.-India Business Council
“I am honored and excited by the opportunity to lead the U.S.-India Business Council and to join the leadership of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce during a period of historic opportunity for both countries,” said Biswal. “As one of the most significant and fastest growing markets, India is an important economic partner for the United States. Likewise, Indian companies are investing in ever greater numbers here in the United States. I am proud to be part of an organization which will play such a critical role shaping U.S.-India relations, and I am thrilled at the chance to help our companies deliver a brighter, more prosperous future for the citizens of the United States and India.”
The Council aims to create an inclusive bilateral trade environment between India and the United States by serving as the voice of industry, linking governments to businesses, and supporting long-term commercial partnerships that will nurture the spirit of entrepreneurship, create jobs, and successfully contribute to the global economy.
The USIBC has been at the centre of a recent controversy after its previous board decided to set up a new organisation called the U.S-India Strategic Partnership Forum (USISPF), breaking away from the Chamber.
- Former President of the USIBC Mukesh Aghi is heading the USISPF, which has on its board PepsiCo chairman Indra Nooyi and CISCO chairman John T. Chambers, among others. Companies with large commercial interests in India resent the iron grip of the U.S Chamber over the affairs of the USIBC, leading to the split.
- Ms. Biswal will have her task cut out to articulate the interests of the American businesses in a way palatable to the Modi government, as the Chamber tries to retain the influence of the USIBC.
- Since the Modi visit and board vote, the Chamber has dismissed Aghi and another USIBC senior official, USIBC officials said. Aghi said in a letter that the Chamber dismissed him because he would not agree to report to the Chamber instead of to the U.S.-India group.
- The fight between the USIBC, which has about 350 members, and the Chamber was largely about turf and independence. A member of the USIBC board said that Donohue was unhappy that the USIBC invited Vice President Pence to a meeting because Donohue wanted to invite Pence to a different event, according to Washington Post on July 12 issue
- The board members who voted to split off from the Chamber such as Pepsi chief executive Indra Nooyi, Cisco executive chairman and former chief executive John T. Chambers, former defense secretary William S. Cohen, MasterCard chief executive Ajay Banga and Warburg Pincus co-chief executive Charles R. “Chip” Kaye.
U.S. Chamber Appoints Nisha Desai Biswal as President of the U.S.-India Business Council
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Chamber of Commerce today announced that the Hon. Nisha Desai Biswal has been appointed President of the U.S.-India Business Council. “We are thrilled to welcome Nisha Biswal to the U.S.-India Business Council and to the U.S. Chamber team,” said Myron Brilliant, U.S. Chamber executive vice president and head of International Affairs. “She is a driven, visionary leader who has a strong record of advancing United States business across the growth markets of Asia and throughout India. Under her strong leadership, we’re confident the U.S.-India Business Council will play a critical role growing commercial partnership, investment, and innovation across the world’s oldest and largest democracies.”
Biswal served as Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asian Affairs in the U.S. Department of State from 2013 to 2017, where she oversaw the U.S.-India strategic partnership during a period of unprecedented cooperation, including launching the U.S.-India Strategic and Commercial Dialogue. In recognition of her efforts, Biswal was awarded the prestigious Samman Award by the President of India in January 2017. She previously served as Assistant Administrator for Asia at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). Biswal also spent over ten years on Capitol Hill, serving as staff director on the State, Foreign Operations Appropriations Subcommittee and the Foreign Affairs Committee in the House of Representatives. Most recently, she was a senior advisor with the Albright Stonebridge Group, where she helped expand the firm’s India and South Asia practice.
“UPS applauds Nisha being named as the new president of the U.S.-India Business Council,” said Jim Barber, president of UPS International. “At this critical time, she will bring dynamic leadership and well-established economic expertise to the mission of improving the U.S.-India relationship.” Biswal will join the U.S. Chamber beginning October 23, 2017.
Formed in 1975 at the request of the U.S. and Indian governments, the U.S.-India Business Council is the premier business advocacy organization, comprised of 350 top-tier U.S. and Indian companies advancing U.S.-India commercial ties. USIBC is the largest bilateral trade association in the United States, with liaison presence in New York, Silicon Valley, and New Delhi. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the world’s largest business federation representing the interests of more than 3 million businesses of all sizes, sectors, and regions, as well as state and local chambers and industry associations. Its International Affairs division includes more than 70 regional and policy experts and 25 country- and region-specific business councils and initiatives. The U.S. Chamber also works closely with 117 American Chambers of Commerce abroad.....USBC
Nisha Biswal to head US-India Business Council
Washington, Oct 11, 2017: Nisha Biswal, a former US Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs, will head the US India Business Council (USIBC), according to an official announcement.
"We are thrilled to welcome Nisha Biswal to the US-India Business Council and to the US Chamber team," said Myron Brilliant, US Chamber executive vice-president and head of International Affairs.
"She is a driven, visionary leader who has a strong record of advancing United States business across the growth markets of Asia and throughout India.
Under her strong leadership, we're confident the US-India Business Council will play a critical role growing commercial partnership, investment, and innovation across the world's oldest and largest democracies," Brilliant said in a press release on Tuesday.
The 42-year-old former diplomat will start her tenure from October 23 next.
Biswal succeeds another Indian American, Mukesh Aghi, who left the organisation following disagreements with the US Chamber of Commerce. The USIBC, an advocacy group that promotes business and commercial ties between the US and India, has presence in both the countries.
Since Aghi's exit, Khush Choksy was serving as the organisation's Acting President.
"I am honoured and excited by the opportunity to lead the US-India Business Council and to join the leadership of the US Chamber of Commerce during a period of historic opportunity for both countries," she said in the USIBC release.
"As one of the most significant and fastest growing markets, India is an important economic partner for the US. Likewise, Indian companies are investing in ever greater numbers here in the US. I am proud to be part of an organization which will play such a critical role shaping US-India relations, and I am thrilled at the chance to help our companies deliver a brighter, more prosperous future for the citizens of the US and India."
Biswal's entry is expected to boost the powerful business group that has more than 300 members.
"UPS applauds Nisha being named as the new president of the US-India Business Council," said Jim Barber, President of UPS International, a member of the USIBC.
"At this critical time, she will bring dynamic leadership and well-established economic expertise to the mission of improving the US-India relationship."
During her tenure at the State Department, Biswal was responsible for US relations with Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Maldives, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan.
Additionally, Biswal has held positions in other government and non-governmental organisations. From September 2010 through 2013, Biswal worked as Assistant Administrator for Asia at US Agency for International Development and oversaw more than $1 billion US assistance to 22 countries.
She also served as the majority clerk for the House Appropriations Committee Foreign Operations Subcommittee.
In her roles in the non-government sector, Biswal worked as Director of Public Policy at InterAction, and as an international delegate for the American Red Cross in Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia.
Biswal was awarded the prestigious Samman Award by the President of India in January 2017....IANS
US-India Strategic Partnership Forum Launched to build on partnership opportunity Between US-INDIA
Aug 01, 2017,
US-India Strategic Partnership Forum (USISPF), a nonprofit corporation focused on stimulating business relations between the U.S. and India, and enhancing the strategic relationship between the two countries. India's Finance and Defense Minister Arun Jaitley will officially unveil the new organization at a launch event on Aug. 01 in New Delhi. It is about business and government coming together in new ways to create meaningful opportunities that have the power to change the lives of citizens.
Mukesh Aghi will lead USISPF as President and Gaurav Verma will serve as Chief Operating Officer. USISPF's Board of Directors will include Chairman John Chambers (Executive Chairman, Cisco), Vice-Chairs Punit Renjen (Global CEO, Deloitte LLP) and Edward Monser (President, Emerson Electric), and Board Members Indra Nooyi (Chairman & CEO, PepsiCo), Ajay Banga (President & CEO, MasterCard), Ambassador Susan Esserman (Partner, Steptoe & Johnson), Secretary William Cohen (Chairman & CEO, The Cohen Group), Purna Saggurti (Chairman of Global Corporate & Investment Banking, Bank of America Merrill Lynch), and Ambassador Frank Wisner (International Affairs Advisor, Squire Patton Boggs).
John Chambers, Chairman of USISPF. said: "Following the success of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Trump's meetings in the U.S. in June 2017, I am incredibly confident about the powerful partnership between the U.S. and India – which is one that I believe can serve as a model for the rest of the world. Our two countries will be able to make great strides in the months and years to come, and USISPF is honored to be a part of this exciting future."
Nisha Desai Biswal sworn in as Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs
Nisha Desai Biswal was sworn in as Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs on October 21, 2013.
- Previously, Ms. Biswal served from September 2010 as Assistant Administrator for Asia at USAID, where she oversaw $1.2 billion in assistance to 22 countries from Central Asia to the Pacific Islands and managed a bureau and overseas staff of over 1200 development professionals.
- During Biswal’s tenure, USAID reopened its mission in Burma and transitioned its programs in countries such as India, Indonesia, and Kazakhstan to global partnerships in development cooperation. Previously at USAID, Biswal had worked in the Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance and the Office of Transition Initiatives, and served as chief of staff in the Management bureau and worked with the USAID Administrator.
- In the House of Representatives, Biswal has served as the majority clerk for the House Appropriations Committee Foreign Operations Subcommittee (HACFO) and as professional staff in the House Foreign Affairs Committee (HFAC), where she was responsible for South Asia.
- Biswal also worked at InterAction, the largest alliance of U.S.-based international humanitarian and development nongovernmental organizations, where she was the Director of Public Policy; and at the American Red Cross, where she served as an international delegate in Armenia, Georgia, and Azerbaijan. Biswal holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Virginia.
“In my travels across the region over the years, I have seen that development is most transformative and sustainable when assistance programs are embraced and owned by the local population and there is a true partnership between both the donor and recipient nation,” she said.
In addition to her passion for fighting global poverty, Biswal has something else in common with her new boss, USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah: Their parents are first-generation immigrants from India. She draws inspiration from their parents’ story of “journey[ing] far from rural India to pursue the American Dream and a better life for their children.”
At USAID, Biswal will help to ensure that future generations in Asia and elsewhere have a chance at fulfilling their dreams as well.