Indian American, Arun Venkataraman was recently announced as the Director-General of the United States and Foreign Commercial Service, and the Assistant Secretary for Global Markets in the Department of Commerce, by President Joe Biden on Wednesday, May 26.
Venkataraman has over 20 years of experience advising companies, international organizations and the US government on international trade issues.
He is currently the Counselor to the Secretary of Commerce, advising the Department on trade and other international economic matters. Before joining the Biden-Harris Administration, Arun was a Senior Director at Visa, a leading global government engagement strategy on a range of international policy issues including digital economy, trade, tax and sanctions.
As the first-ever Director of Policy at the Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration under President Obama, Venkataraman helped shape the US government’s responses to critical challenges faced by firms in the US and in markets around the world, including China and India.
While working at the Office of the US Trade Representative (USTR), the Indian-American adviser led the development and implementation of US-India trade policy as the Director for India, for which he received the agency’s Kelly Award for outstanding performance and extraordinary leadership.
He also served as Associate General Counsel, representing the US in litigation before the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and in negotiations on international trade agreements.
Venkataraman has previously served as a Legal Officer at the WTO, advising the organization on a wide range of issues raised in appeals of trade disputes between countries.
Meanwhile, five other individuals were nominated by Biden to serve in key administration roles – including Brian Nelson for Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence in the Department of the Treasury, Lisa Brown for General Counsel of the Department of Education and Matt Olsen for Assistant Attorney General, National Security Division in the Department of Justice.