White House announces former aide Kenneth Juster (right) as the U.S. Ambassador to India

WASHINGTON (Diya TV) —  President Trump nominated former White House aide Kenneth Juster as the U.S. Ambassador to India.The 62-year-old New York resident is considered an expert on U.S.-India trade relations, particularly in defense and high-technology. Upon confirmation by the U.S. Senate, he will come to New Delhi for his new role.

Juster has over three decades of experience in government, law, business, finance and international affairs with expertise in U.S.-India relations. He was involved in a number of important U.S.-India tracks, including the U.S.-India Civil nuclear agreement in 2008 that was first put in place toward the end of President George W. Bush’s reign and later implemented by President Obama in 2016.

Considered a globalist, Juster’s experience is diverse, having served as the deputy assistant to the president for International Economic Affairs and deputy director of the National Economic Council. He co-ordinated Trump’s international economic policy, including the Trump administrations national security and foreign policy.

He chaired the U.S.-India High Technology Cooperation Group, and was key in launching the Next Steps in Strategic Partnership (NSSP) initiative, which led to increasing civil and nuclear space co-operation and high-technology trade.

Juster previously served as Under Secretary of Commerce from 2001-2005, Counselor (acting) of the State Department from 1992-1993, and deputy and senior adviser to the Deputy Secretary of State from 1989-1992. In the private sector, he has been a partner at the investment firm Warburg Pincus LLC, Executive Vice President at Salesforce.com and senior partner at the law firm Arnold & Porter. He has also served as Chairman of Harvard University’s Weatherhead Center for International Affairs and as Vice Chairman of The Asia Foundation.

“Ken Juster’s move to Indian Ambassador is because he is extremely qualified for the position,” White House deputy spokesperson Lindsay E Walters told PTI. “Ken has a strong and positive relationship with everyone in the White House, including the president,” she added.

Ashley Telis, considered a top India expert in the US, says that Juster “knows India well and actually was deeply involved in successful bilateral negotiations … The Indians will welcome him enthusiastically,” she told The Washington Post.

Juster’s role as a managing partner at Warburg Pincus has drawn questions. The private firm, which has stakes in a wide range of Indian companies, including the Tata Group and ICICI has created concerns by some. The Daily Beast reported Warburg Pincus has been “pouring money into Indian companies, adding that the equity firm has been “dramatically scaling up its investments in Indian companies.” According to a report in the Business-Standard, In the last six months, the private equity firm has reportedly invested $1.14 billion in Indian businesses.

 Juster succeeds Richard Verma, who vacated the position on Jan. 20. Juster holds a law degree from Harvard Law School, a master’s degree in public policy from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard and a Bachelor of Arts degree in government (Phi Beta Kappa) from Harvard College. He was research assistant to Professor Samuel P. Huntington as an undergraduate at Harvard and wrote his senior thesis on Japanese foreign policy.

Information from The Washington Post contributed to this report.