Suma Chakrabarti

Sir Sumantra "Suma" Chakrabarti KCB (born 1959) was elected as the President of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) on 18 May 2012 for a period of four years starting from 3 July 2012.[1] He was elected for a second four-year term on 11 May 2016.[2] He was the highest ranking Indian in Britain's civil service.[3]

Sir Suma Chakrabarti

6th President of European Bank for Reconstruction and Development
Assumed office
3 July 2012
Preceded byThomas Mirow
Personal details
Born1959 (age 60–61)
Jalpaiguri, West Bengal, India
NationalityBritish, originally Indian
Alma materUniversity of Oxford

Early life and educationEdit

Chakrabarti was born in 1959 in Jalpaiguri, West Bengal, India. He was educated at City of London School; New College, Oxford (BA in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics); and the University of Sussex (MA in Development Economics).[4]


Chakrabarti joined the UK's Overseas Development Administration (ODA), the predecessor to the Department for International Development, in 1984 as a senior economic assistant working on macroeconomics issues and UK aid projects. He previously worked in Botswana on an Overseas Development Institute Fellowship. He was seconded by the UK government to the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank in the 1980s. On returning to the ODA in London, he became Private Secretary to the Conservative Lynda Chalker, then Minister of State for Overseas Development based at the Foreign Office. Chakrabarti subsequently became Head of Aid Policy and Resources.

He moved to H.M. Treasury in 1996 before taking a Cabinet Office post responsible for creating the new central Performance and Innovation Unit to support the Prime Minister, Tony Blair, co-ordinating reviews of long-term issues that cross public sector institutional boundaries. Still in the Cabinet Office, he headed the Economic and Domestic Affairs Secretariat, also maintaining a foot in the then Department of Transport, Local Government and the Regions.

In 2001, returning to the Department for International Development (DfID), the successor body to the ODA, Chakrabarti became DfID Director-General for Regional Development Programmes, managing 1,200 staff in Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, the Caribbean and Latin America. On 8 December 2009, he gave evidence to The Iraq Inquiry, discussing preparations for the 2003 invasion of Iraq.[5]

From 2007 to 2012, he served as a Permanent Secretary (senior civil servant) at the UK's Ministry of Justice. During that period, he also held office as Clerk of the Crown in Chancery, and, as such, was responsible for the running of the Crown Office, under the directions of the Lord Chancellor. He was appointed on 15 November 2007.[6]

On 29 May 2018 a complaint was made by several EBRD board members against President Suma Chakrabarti. An external investigation was subsequently carried out by a Swiss law firm.[7] In December 2018, the EBRD’s managing director for Communications confirmed that an external investigation had concluded that there was no misconduct by Chakrabarti. [8]

Personal lifeEdit

He is married and has one daughter.[citation needed]

Offices heldEdit

Government offices
Preceded by
John Vereker[9]
Permanent Secretary of the
Department for International Development

Succeeded by
Minouche Shafik
Preceded by
Alex Allan
Permanent Secretary of the Department for Constitutional Affairs
Permanent Secretary of the
Ministry of Justice

Succeeded by
Ursula Brennan


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  3. ^ "THE NEW TOURNAMENT". The Telegraph. Kolkota. Retrieved 2 December 2018.
  4. ^ Missing or empty |title= (help)
  5. ^ "Iraq details for aid workers 'were scanty before war'". BBC News. 8 December 2009. Retrieved 28 January 2010.
  6. ^ Suma Chakrabarti – Ministry of Justice Archived 4 July 2008 at the Wayback Machine
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External linksEdit