Mr. Ashok Kumar Jha, Former Finace Secretary to Government of India, IAS (Retd.) is a renowned expert in handling policy issues of key economic ministries of Govt. His vast experience of over four decades in the upper echelons of Govt. and the private sector, coupled with his administrative acumen stands him in good stead to guide companies to reach their potential.
Mr. Jha, an IAS officer of the 1969 batch, has had a 38 years stint in the civil services and had held crucial positions in India’s State and Central Govt. apparatus. He is one of the very few civil servants to have extensive work experience in Foreign Policy, Industrial Promotion, International Trade as well as Economic Affairs and Finance.
Mr. Jha’s appointment as the Finance Secretary, Govt. of India was a fitting culmination of an already illustrious career. For about two years he was in the Finance Ministry first as Secretary, Economic Affairs and later as Finance Secretary in addition to continuing as Secretary, Economic Affairs. Apart from preparing the Union Budget for two years – the years when GDP growth in India clocked about 9.5% – he was instrumental in formulating and monitoring macro economic policies.
These included issues relating to fiscal policy and public finance, inflation, public debt management and the functioning of Capital Markets as well as Stock Exchanges. He also played an important role in monitoring and raising external resources through multi-lateral and bi-lateral Official Development Assistance, foreign investments and monitoring foreign exchange resources and balance of payments. He was India’s alternate Governor in the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank.
Prior to the Finance Ministry, Mr. Jha was the Secretary of the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion in which capacity he was instrumental in promoting Foreign Direct Investment into India besides ushering in a Patents regime to conform with international obligations. He was also Advisor – International Affairs in the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FICCI).
After retiring from Govt., Mr. Jha had two year stint with Hyundai Motor India as its Executive President.
An avid golfer, Mr. Jha graduated from St. Stephen’s college in Economics and went on to do his Masters from the Delhi School of Economics. He has another Masters Degree in Development Economics from the Australian National University, Canberra and was also a Visiting Fellow at Oxford University, UK.
He is currently the Non-Executive Chairman of a Stock Exchange and Chairman of a Non Banking Finance Company. He is also Advisor to some other Companies including a Japanese Investment Banking.