Dr. Vijay Kelkar of India has been elected Chairman of the board of the Forum of Federations. Dr. Kelkar is the current chair of India’s powerful Finance Commission. His term as Forum chair begins January 1, 2010.
Dr. Kelkar replaces Dr. Arnold Koller, of Switzerland, who held the post at the Forum since 2005. The Forum’s board has named Dr. Koller a Fellow of the Forum, the organization’s highest honour.
Dr. Kelkar’s experience is wide and varied.
In the Government of India, Dr. Kelkar is the current Chairman, Finance Commission, in the rank of a Union Cabinet Minister since January 1, 2008. He has held several other key posts, among them, Advisor to Minister of Finance, Government of India in the rank of a Minister of State, from August, 2002 to September, 2004; Finance Secretary, Government of India, 1998-1999; Chairman, Tariff Commission, Government of India, 1997-1998; Secretary, Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas, Government of India, 1994-1997.
Internationally, Dr. Kelkar was Executive Director at the International Monetary Fund for India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Bhutan from 1999-2002; and Director & Coordinator, International Trade Division of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, Geneva, Switzerland, 1991-1994.
In other functions with the Government of India, Dr. Kelkar sat as Chairman, Task Force for Implementation of the Fiscal Responsibility and Budgement Act, Ministry of Finance, Government of India, 2004; Chairman, Task Force on Direct Taxes, Ministry of Finance, Government of India, 2002; and Chairman, Task Force on Indirect Taxes, Ministry of Finance, Government of India, 2002.
He has also held important positions in the private sector, such as Chairman, Advisory Council, Citi Group, 2005- 2007; Member, Board of Directors, Tata Chemicals Ltd, Mumbai, 2004- 2007; and Member, Board of Directors, Jet Airways, Mumbai, 2004- 2007.
At the Forum’s board of directors meeting of October 7, 2009, three new members joined the board: Mukul Joshi of India; Vicente Carlos y PlÃ¡ Trevas of Brazil; and Alexander Alvaro of Germany. Mr. Joshi is Secretary of India’s Inter-State Council Secretariat. Mr. Trevas is an adviser to the Caixa EconÃ´mica Federal, one of Brazil’s key federal banks. Mr. Alvaro is a member of the European Parliament, and holds the Young Professional seat on the board.