CIMB ASEAN Research Institute, in collaboration with the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University and ASEAN Business Club, held a roundtable discussion on 2nd April 2019, with the theme Tackling Non-Tariff Barriers in the New Trade Order. Speakers included Juan Sebastian Cortes-Sanchez, Trade Policy Analyst of Asian Trade Centre; Dr. Kaewkamol Pitakdumrongkit, Deputy Head and Assistant Professor, Centre for Multilateralism Studies, S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS) of Nanyang Technological University; Chris Humphrey, Executive Director of EU-ASEAN Business Council; Tan Sri Dr. Munir Majid, Chairman of CIMB ASEAN Research Institute (CARI) and President of the ASEAN Business Club; Tan Sri Dr. Rebecca Fatima Sta Maria, Executive Director of APEC Secretariat; Alpana Roy, Director, ASEAN (Trade Division), Ministry of Trade and Industry, Singapore; and H.E. Ong Keng Yong, Executive Deputy Chairman of S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies.
Discussion summary will be released soon.
H.E. Ong Keng Yong
Executive Deputy Chairman, S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies
Director, ASEAN (Trade Division), Ministry of Trade and Industry, Singapore
Alpana was awarded the Public Administration Medal (Bronze) National Day Award in 2018.
Alpana obtained her degree in Political Science (Honours) from the National University of Singapore in 1995 and her Masters in International Public Policy from the Johns Hopkins University Paul H Nitze School of Advanced International Studies in 2013. She is married with one child.
Tan Sri Dr. Rebecca Fatima Sta Maria
Executive Director, APEC Secretariat
She was the Secretary-General of the Malaysian Ministry of International Trade and Investment from 2012 to 2016, where she oversaw the formulation of Malaysia’s international trade policies and positions and often took the lead in their implementation as chief negotiator for bilateral and regional free trade agreements such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership.
Dr Sta Maria played an integral role in Malaysia’s participation in multilateral forums such as APEC, where she often represented her economy during the APEC Ministers’ Responsible for Trade Meetings and the Small and Medium Enterprises Ministerial Meetings. In the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), Dr Sta Maria chaired the body that drafted the ASEAN Economic Community 2015 Blueprint as well as the ASEAN Economic Community 2025 Blueprint. An accomplished academic and writer, Dr Sta Maria’s scholarship has been recognized through awards from the American Academy of Human Resource Development and from the University of Georgia. In 2017, she authored a book about her personal slice of Malaysian heritage and cuisine, called The Smell of Home.
Before 2010, the position of executive director of the APEC Secretariat rotated yearly among officials assigned by the incumbent host economy. Starting in 2010, the appointment was opened to applications from highly qualified professionals who will when appointed, lead the Secretariat in fixed three-year terms with an option to renew.
Dr Sta Maria is the first woman executive director of the APEC Secretariat.
Executive Director, EU-ASEAN Business Council
Chris began his varied professional career as a UK civil servant where, amongst other things, he was Assistant Private Secretary to a Minister and an Air Services Trade Negotiator covering the Asia Pacific region. After leaving the civil service, Chris moved to the private sector working initially in the government and external relations teams at two British airlines in the UK, before moving to Shanghai, China with Virgin Atlantic where he headed up the airline’s China operation and oversaw the rapid expansion of their business in China. Whilst in Shanghai, Chris also sat on the Executive Committee of the British Chamber of Commerce. Chris then joined a UK based security and defence group where he led their Asia Pacific team for over five years and was instrumental in them getting contracts with the Japanese and Singapore governments and also with SOEs in China.
More recently Chris has been acting as a consultant assisting start-ups in Asia with their business and corporate development before joining the EU-ASEAN Business Council in June 2014.
With over 20 years of experience of either working for or dealing with governments and regulatory authorities, Chris is available to provide key insights, lead discussions or comment on topics including ASEAN integration, European business presence in SEA, Infrastructure financing, EU-ASEAN trade relations and EU economic and political developments.
Chris is a regular on the ASEAN conference circuit regularly appearing at conferences and seminars covering ASEAN’s integration agenda and trade and investment issues. He has also appeared on the BBC’s Asia Business Report; CNBC’s Asia Street Times; Channel News Asia’s Conversation With; 938Live Radio News; and Channel News Asia news reports.
Dr. Kaewkamol Pitakdumrongkit
Deputy Head and Assistant Professor, Centre for Multilateralism Studies, S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University
Juan Sebastian Cortes-Sanchez
Trade Policy Analyst, Asian Trade Centre
Tan Sri Dr. Munir Majid
Chairman, CIMB ASEAN Research Institute President, ASEAN Business Club
He has an extensive experience and is well known in the Malaysian corporate world. He had been the Group Editor of the New Straits Times, first executive chairman of CIMB and founding chairman of the Malaysian Securities Commission. After stepping down from the Securities Commission, he became Independent Non-Executive Director of Telekom Malaysia Berhad, Chairman of Celcom (Malaysia) Berhad and Non-Executive Chairman of Malaysian Airline System Berhad. He was Founder President of the Kuala Lumpur Business Club, established in 2003 and is a member of the Court of Fellows of the Malaysian Institute of Management.
Tan Sri Dr. Munir obtained a B.Sc (Econ) and Ph.D in International Relations from the London School of Economic and Political Science (LSE) in 1971 and 1978. He is an Honorary Fellow of LSE and continues the long association with his alma mater as Visiting Senior Fellow at the Centre of International Affairs, Diplomacy and Strategy. Tan Sri Dr. Munir is an associate of Southeast Asia Centre (SEAC) at LSE.