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The WICS Connect Group is led by Siddharth, a seasoned bureaucrat, with 35 years of distinguished track record in government at senior positions. He worked for over 20 years in the economic ministries and departments, including 12 years in the Ministry of Commerce and Industry GOI, with a stint in the Indian Mission to the EU, Brussels. He was India’s Chief Negotiator for concluding the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement with ASEAN. As Director in charge of Anti-Dumping, he personally conducted exporter verifications in countries like China, Russia, Japan, South Korea, Indonesia, Spain, Denmark and Belgium. He represented India in UNCTAD as Country Expert for trade remedial measures.
He promoted India’s exports of Gems and Jewellery, Agriculture and Marine products. In addition, he looked after India’s bilateral trade with ASEAN, North East Asia and CIS countries. He served as India Lead in the Kimberley Process Certification System to check trading in conflict diamond. He was instrumental in establishing the only Special Notified Zone for consignment import of rough Diamonds in India, at Mumbai.
He represented India in the Common Fund for Commodities(CFC), Amsterdam, where he was unanimously elected as the Chairman of the Governing Body. He was closely involved with drafting the Standards for Organic Products and Basmati Rice. As Chairman Tea Board, he introduced a Plant Protection Code for the first time for improving the acceptability of Indian Teas in the foreign markets. He was primarily responsible for bringing all the major IT Companies to Kolkata, where he served as the Principal Secretary for IT and Biotechnology for nearly 5 years in Government of West Bengal. While heading the administration in Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council, he was instrumental in getting the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. In the Wool Development Board, Ministry of Textiles, GOI, he set up the national level Board from a scratch as its founder Member Secretary and Executive Director for the development of wool and woolen industry in the Country.
Some of the Important posts held by Siddharth in the economic ministries/departments include:
⦁ Principal Advisor Industry and Chairman Bengal Industrial Development and Promotion Board, Govt. of West Bengal (2015-2017)
⦁ Director General, DGS&D, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, GOI (2014-2015)
⦁ Joint Secretary, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, GOI (2010-2014)
⦁ Principal Secretary, IT and Biotechnology, Govt. of West Bengal (2006-2010)
⦁ Principal Advisor, Agriculture and Marine Products, and Commercial Counsellor, Indian Mission to the EU, Brussels (2002-2006)
⦁ Director, Department of Commerce, GOI (1999-2002)
⦁ Member Secretary, Wool Development Board, Ministry of Textiles, GOI (1988-1992)
While serving in these capacities, he also held the following additional charges:
⦁ Director, Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (2012-2015)
⦁ Director, Hindustan Diamond Company (2012-2015)
⦁ CEO, Price Stabilization Fund (2012-2015)
⦁ Chairman, Tea Board of India (2011 and 2012-2014)
⦁ Director, MPEDA (2001-2002)
⦁ Director, APEDA (1999-2001)
⦁ Director, Spices Board (1999-2001)
⦁ Director, Tobacco Board (1999-2001)