Montek Singh Ahluwalia

Indian Economist | Indian Civil Servant

Who am I

Montek Singh Ahluwalia is an Indian economist and civil servant who was the Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission of the Republic of India, a position which carries the rank of a Cabinet Minister. He was previously the first Director of the Independent Evaluation Office at the International Monetary Fund.

After graduating from University of Oxford, Ahluwalia joined the World Bank in 1968. At the age of 28, he became the youngest "Division Chief" in the World Bank's bureaucracy, in charge of the Income Distribution Division in the World Bank's Development Research Centre. He returned to India in 1979 to take up the position of Economic Adviser in the Ministry of Finance. He held several senior positions as a civil servant, including Special Secretary to the Prime Minister, Commerce secretary, Secretary Department of Economic Affairs in the Finance Ministry and Finance Secretary.

Ahluwalia has been a key figure in the Indian economic reform process. He has consistently pushed for economic reforms involving a shift from the earlier reliance on extensive government control over the economy with high levels of protection, to a much more open economy with a larger role for the private sector responding to market forces and greater openness to imports, foreign technology and direct foreign investment.

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