Indian American nominated as US` chief agriculture negotiator

Last Updated: Wednesday, September 23, 2009 - 11:15

Pittsburgh: US President Barack Obama has nominated an eminent Indian American agricultural scientist for the post of chief agriculture negotiator, a position which has assumed a critical role in the days of tough global negotiations on the concerned issues.

Islam A Siddiqui, who earned his Bachelor of Science from the Uttar Pradesh Agriculture University, has been yesterday nominated by Obama as the chief agricultural negotiator in the Office of the US Trade Representative, a White House communication said.

Siddiqui`s nomination came along with seven other key administrative posts.
"I am grateful for the willingness of these fine individuals to serve my administration and I am confident that they will represent our nation well. I look forward to working with them in the coming months and years," Obama said.

Siddiqui is currently Vice President for Science and Regulatory Affairs at CropLife America, where he is responsible for regulatory and international trade issues related to crop protection chemicals.

He has also served as CropLife America`s Vice President for agricultural biotechnology and trade, and has earlier worked in the Clinton Administration.

From 1997 to 2001, Siddiqui served in various capacities in the Clinton administration at US department of Agriculture as Under Secretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs, Senior Trade Advisor to Secretary Dan Glickman and Deputy Under Secretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs.

"As a result, he worked closely with the USTR and represented USDA in bilateral, regional and multi-lateral agricultural trade negotiations," the White House said.

Since 2004, Siddiqui has also served on the US department of Commerce`s Industry Trade Advisory Committee on Chemicals, Pharmaceuticals, and Health/Science Products & Services, which advises the US Secretary of Commerce and USTR on international trade issues related to these sectors.

Between 2001 and 2003, he was appointed as Senior Associate at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), where he focused on agricultural biotechnology and food security issues.

Before joining USDA, he spent 28 years with the California department of food and agriculture. He earned his MS and PhD degrees in plant pathology, both from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana.

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