CIMB ASEAN Research Institute in collaboration with ASEAN Business Club held a roundtable discussion on 22nd November 2016, themed Connecting the Region through Master Plan on ASEAN Connectivity 2025. Speaker of the roundtable is Mr. Lim Chze Cheen, Head, ASEAN Connectivity Division, ASEAN Secretariat. Three panelists joining the discussion are Dr. Raymond Kwong, Chief Executive Officer & Group Managing Director, Silverlake Axis Ltd; Ms. Hanim Hamzah, Regional Managing Partner, ZICOlaw Network and Senior Foreign Counsel, Roosdiono & Partners; and Ms. Flora Loh Abdullah, CEO, ASEAN Tourism Association. This discussion is moderated by Tan Sri Dr. Munir Majid, Chairman of CARI and President of the ASEAN Business Club.

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Mr. Lim Chze Cheen

Head, ASEAN Connectivity Division, ASEAN Secretariat

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Mr. Lim Chze Cheen is the Head of the ASEAN Connectivity Division under the Office of the Secretary-General at the ASEAN Secretariat. He coordinated the development of the Master Plan on ASEAN Connectivity 2025 and its preceding document. Prior to assuming this position, he was the Assistant Director of the Strategic Planning and Coordination Division, which managed the overall reporting of progress of ASEAN Community as well as managed development cooperation programmes and projects. He was earlier the Assistant Director handling ASEAN Economic Community coordination, particularly the development and subsequent monitoring of the ASEAN Economic Community Blueprint 2015, and the Senior Officer handling Trade in Services.

Before joining the ASEAN Secretariat in 2005, Mr. Lim was a Senior Research Officer at the Malaysian Institute of Economic Research (MIER), specialising in macroeconomics and industrial studies. His publications include, among others, a case study prepared for the WTO Secretariat (2004) “Malaysia: Strategies for the Liberalisation of the Services Sector”, and a paper in the Asia Pacific Development Journal (2001) “Mobilising Domestic and External Resources for Economic Development: Lessons from the Malaysian Experience”.

Mr. Lim holds a University Malaya Master in Economics and a BSc (Economics) from the University of London.


Dr. Raymond Kwong

Chief Executive Officer & Group Managing Director, Silverlake Axis Ltd.

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Dr. Kwong was the Managing Director of Silverlake Corporation from 2001 to 2005, where he led the successful implementation of several key SIBS Core Banking customer transformation projects. Prior to joining the Silverlake Group, he was a Partner/Vice President of Ernst & Young Global Consulting and Cap Gemini Ernst & Young for 11 years from 1989 to 2000. He was the Senior Manager and Head of IT Consulting for Coopers & Lybrand (South East Asia) from 1984 to 1989. He started his professional career as a Senior Systems Analyst for Pacific Power (Australia) from 1979 to 1983.

Dr. Kwong has over 36 years of experience in Information Technology, Business Transformation and Solution Implementation in Financial Services, Utilities and Technology Industries. He has a Bachelor of Commerce (Honours) from the University of New South Wales (Australia) and Ph.D in Information Systems. He is a Certified Practicing Accountant (Australia).

He is a Board Member of Global InfoTech Co. Ltd., an associate company of Silverlake Axis Ltd listed in the Shenzhen Stock Exchange. He is also a Non-Executive Director of Finzsoft Solutions Limited, an associate company of Silverlake Axis Ltd listed in the New Zealand Stock Exchange.


Ms. Hanim Hamzah

Regional Managing Partner, ZICOlaw Network Senior Foreign Counsel, Roosdiono & Partners

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Ms. Hanim is the Regional Managing Partner of the ZICOlaw network and heads the Corporate M&A practice group at Roosdiono & Partners. Her 20 years of regional practice experience includes being resident in Malaysia, Japan and Indonesia where she specialised in major infrastructure project financing and M&A deals in aviation, banking, insurance, mining, oil and gas, plantations, and property. She is also well-versed in cross-border securitisation deals, structured financial products, and Islamic finance, where she has represented the interests of investors from Asia, the US, UK, and Europe in key onshore and offshore multi-currency transactions.

She has been recognised as a ‘Leading Lawyer’ in Indonesia, in Corporate & Commercial, Cross Border, Mergers & Acquisitions and Project Infrastructure Finance (Islamic Finance News, 2011, 2012, 2013) as well as a ‘Leading Lawyer’ by Asia Law Profiles in 2015 and Asialaw in 2016. She has written articles and essays including ‘A Giant in the Making – Recent legal and regulatory developments for Islamic banking and finance in Indonesia’ in Guide to Islamic Banking and Finance (Imperial College Press, 2010).


Ms. Flora Loh Abdullah

CEO, ASEAN Tourism Association

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Ms. Flora has been appointed as the CEO of ASEAN Tourism Association (ASEANTA) since 1st October 2015. ASEANTA is an association that is comprised of various national tourism bodies, airlines and associations of the travel and hospitality industry in the ASEAN region. It is an association aimed at enhancing government and private partnership in marketing and development of tourism in the ASEAN region. Prior to joining ASEANTA, she was with Malaysia Airlines for 20 years.

She graduated from Edith Cowan University, Perth, Australia with a Bachelor of Business and Double Major in Tourism Management and Marketing. Ms. Flora also an honorary member of the National Golden Key Society of Australia which is an honorary membership granted to top ten students in the university. She was also awarded the Excellence Award in Tourism by Tourism Council of Australia for being the top student in Tourism Management in 1999. Her academic interests are in the areas of tourism and marketing.



Tan Sri Dr. Munir Majid

Chairman, CIMB ASEAN Research Institute President, ASEAN Business Club

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Tan Sri Dr. Munir is the Chairman of CIMB ASEAN Research Institute (CARI) and the president of ASEAN Business Club (ABC). He is also the Chairman of Bank Muamalat Malaysia Bhd, and has been on its board since 2008. He obtained his B.Sc (Econ) from the London School of Economics and Political Science in 1971, and his PhD in International Relations in 1978. He taught at the Department of International Relations in LSE from1972-1975, and was an analyst for Daiwa Europe NV in London from 1975-1978.

On his return to Malaysia at the end of 1978, Tan Sri Dr. Munir joined The New Straits Times Press (NSTP) as a lead writer and progressed to become its Group Editor. He left The NST in 1986 to become the CEO of a small merchant bank, Pertanian Baring Sanwa (PBS), which then became Commerce International Merchant Bankers, the genesis of today’s CIMB Group. He left CIMB in 1993 at the invitation of the Government of Malaysia to set up the Securities Commission and became its first Executive Chairman until 1999. He continued with his illustrious career, serving in various capacities, including as Chairman of both Celcom and Malaysia Airlines System at different times. He was the founder and President of the Kuala Lumpur Business Club (2003-2008), and was the chairman of its Advisory Council. Dr. Munir, an Honorary Fellow, is Visiting Senior Fellow at LSE IDEAS (Centre for international affairs, diplomacy and strategy).









23 November, 2016
By Anette Appaduray, as appeared in The Edge Financial Daily


KUALA LUMPUR: With the possible rise in protectionist trade policies in the US under the Trump presidency, it is now more important for Asean countries to strengthen their economic integration, said CIMB ASEAN Research Institute chairman Tan Sri Munir Majid.

“The Asean economic integration assumes great importance to generate greater economic activity, especially because of slower world economic growth and now, more critically, because of potential anti-free trade and protectionist measures by the Trump administration,” he said after the Asean Roundtable Series on “Connecting the Region Through Master Plan on Asean Connectivity 2025” yesterday.

“Asean businesses must understand the challenges of the international political economic environment and should appreciate the objectives of growth that come from integration in Asean,” he added…

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23 November, 2016
By CK Tan, as appeared in Nikkei Asian Review


KUALA LUMPUR — Southeast Asian policymakers should accelerate integration projects in the pipeline, such as infrastructure development and digital innovation, to meet a 2025 target, experts argued at a roundtable Tuesday.

Meeting to discuss the private sector’s role in the Master Plan on ASEAN Connectivity 2025, participants agreed that with barriers to integration substantially eliminated, the next step is to kick off projects already outlined by the 10 member countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.

“Let’s step it up,” said Ravidran Palaniappan, a senior director at Malaysia’s Ministry of International Trade and Industry, referring to the 40 infrastructure projects identified by the ASEAN Secretariat for implementation across the region. These projects are being handled under public-private partnerships but have not taken off, primarily because of a lack of funding…

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