K V Kamath appointed as the chief of Brics Bank

K V Kamath appointed as the chief of Brics Bank

KV Kamath, ICICI Bank's non-executive chairman, has been appointed the first head of the $100-billion New Development Bank of the BRICS countries, to be based in China's financial hub, Shanghai.

The appointment will become effective when he becomes free from his current assignments," finance secretary Rajiv Mehrishi told reporters on Monday. Kamath is the Chairman of the India's largest private sector bank ICICI.

India will hold the presidency of the bank for the first six years, followed by five-year terms each for Brazil and Russia, under an agreement reached after intense negotiations among the five countries in the BRICS group - Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa; last year. As per the agreement, India got the right to nominate the first president. It would be headed by an Indian for a first five-year term, followed by a Brazilian and then a Russian.

Mr Kamath is one of India's most well-known bankers. He retired as Managing Director and CEO of ICICI bank in April 2009, and took up his current position as non-executive chairman.

Mr Kamat, a mechanical engineer who holds an Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad degree, also worked at the Asian Development Bank and spent several years in South-East Asia. He was honored with a Padma Bhushan in 2008.

The name of the BRICS bank (the New Development Bank) was suggested by Prime Minster Narendra Modi at a meeting of member countries in Fortaleza, Brazil in November 2014. He called the agreement to set up the BRICS's bank a significant step and said an open international trading regime is critical for global economic growth.

The bank aims at funding infrastructure projects in developing nations and is seen as a step towards reshaping the Western-dominated international financial system. It will have a $100 billion Currency Reserve Arrangement (CRA) which will help countries to deal with short-term liquidity pressures.

India expects more money for infrastructure development from BRICS Bank. The bank will start with an initial paid-in-capital of $50 billion, with each BRICS country contributing $ 10 billion.