The Union Ministry of Finance has appointed Shaktikanta Das, Former Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs (DEA) as India’s G 20 Sherpa till December 31, 2018 for Development Track of G20.
Sherpa is personal representative of leaders participating at G-20 summit and are responsible for thrashing out details before meeting of the leaders.
There are two tracks in G 20-Development Track and Finance Track. Finance Track is managed by Secretary (Economic Affairs) as India’s Deputy to G-20 and Development Track is coordinated by Sherpa. The DEA, Ministry of Finance provides necessary support to the Sherpa.
Former NITI Aayog vice-chairman had recommended to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to appoint full-time Sherpa for G20 talks as India’s role is expanding in global arena. Panagariya was India’s Sherpa for G20 talks in September 2015. As per earlier norms, deputy chairman of erstwhile Planning Commission used to be Sherpa for G20 talks.
Sherpa is personal representative of leader of member country at international Summit meeting such as G8, G20 or Nuclear Security Summit. They are mostly career diplomats or senior government officials appointed by leaders of their countries. The term has been derived from Nepalese Sherpa people, who serve as guides for mountaineers in Himalayas.
The Sherpa is mainly engaged in planning, implementation and negotiation tasks through Summit. They coordinate agenda, seek consensus at highest political levels and participate in series of pre-Summit consultations to help negotiate their leaders’ positions.