Mumbai, Aug 21 A strong likelihood of continuity in policies was the biggest draw for top bankers, as they welcomed the appointment of Urjit Patel as the 24th Governor of the Reserve Bank.
"Patel has played a key role in developing the new monetary policy framework that has focused on reining in inflation and imparted stability to the currency," country's largest private sector lender ICICI Bank's managing director and CEO Chanda Kochhar said.
"His appointment would ensure a smooth transition and continuity in monetary policy, as India puts in place major structural reforms to transition to a higher growth path," she added.
The Government yesterday announced the appointment of Patel as the next Governor of RBI. He succeeds the charismatic and outspoken Raghuram Rajan, who surprised all by his decision of returning to academia and opting out of being considered for a second term.
A committee headed by Patel had suggested the path to get inflation down to 4 per cent in the medium term and a glide path to achieve it.
"Being an architect of the new policy framework, he retains high credibility for monetary stability. He also combines the strengths of a global perspective and a solid academic background," Shikha Sharma, MD and CEO of Axis Bank said.
With frequent detailing of the uneasy relationship between the RBI Governor with the Finance Ministry, Sharma said Patel's expertise in fiscal policy will serve as a "bridge between RBI and Government".
State Bank of India's chairman Arundhati Bhattacharya, who was speculated to be one of the probable names to replace Rajan, also welcomed the Government's decision.
"Patel has been at the helm of institutionalising the inflation targeting regime in the monetary policy framework. His appointment signals continuity of policy intent, both on part of RBI and Government," she said. Rana Kapoor, the chief of Yes Bank exuded confidence that it will be a smooth transition from Rajan to Patel.
"Patel is an astute economist with a clear vision, who will surely continue to de-risk the Indian economy and strike the fine balance between growth imperatives and inflation management," he said.