MEA for industry presence in foreign service

MEA for industry presence in foreign service

The Union Minister for External Affairs Salman Khurshid on Tuesday mentioned plans by the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) to have people from the industry in the foreign service in a bid to work on issues pertaining to economic diplomacy and encourage building favourable trade and economic relations between India and other nations.

Addressing delegates at an event organised by the Federation of Karnataka Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FKCCI) in Bangalore on Tuesday, Khurshid said, “The area of foreign affairs is undergoing changes due to demands Indian diplomats may have to fulfill.”

“Currently, we are looking at doubling the size of deputation across our missions abroad, and we hope that members of industry join the diplomatic services for two years or so, spend a couple of postings abroad and then return to their careers,” Khurshid added, without revealing the finer details of the plan.

Among the services under the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC), the Indian Foreign Service (IFS) has a small deputation. As of now, there are around 700 IFS officers, with MEA planning to increase that number to 1,200 by 2018, since the requirement for the same has gone up in recent times.

FKCCI inaugurated its NRI chapter which is aimed at facilitating the coming together of NRIs from Karnataka to act as cultural representatives of the state abroad.

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