DATE: 12 July 2018

TIME: 12:30pm – 2:00pm

VENUE: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

TOPIC: ASEAN Digital Economy – Investment, Gaps, and Policy Implications

As the Chair of ASEAN in 2018, Singapore has a special focus on Innovation and digital economy. ASEAN is currently studying the preparedness of each ASEAN member states in embracing the Industry 4.0. According to a report by AT Kearney released in 2016, the growth of the digital economy could add US$1 trillion to the GDP of ASEAN over the decade since the release of the report. However, there are hurdles that need to be overcome and policy initiatives that will help the sector fulfil its growth potential and contribute to the bloc’s overall economic expansion.

This business lunch roundtable will discuss issues such as what are the gaps and impediments that need to be bridged and addressed? What kind of infrastructure and policy initiatives that are needed to realise the potential of digital economy of ASEAN? What are the investments needed to allow digital economy to flourish in ASEAN? What does digital economy mean for ASEAN integration?


​​Richard BolwijnHead, Investment Research Branch, DIAE, UNCTAD

Richard is the research coordinator for UNCTAD’s annual flagship World Investment Report, as well as for a range of other publications on investment and enterprise development. He was the lead author of WIR theme chapters on GVCs, International Tax, Corporate Nationality, and the Digital Economy.

Richard is also the acting Head of the Business and Investment Facilitation section, which provides technical assistance to developing countries in the area of eRegulations (simplification of administrative procedures for business and investors), eRegistrations (automation of procedures and single investor windows), and iGuides (marketing of investment climate).

Prior to joining UNCTAD in 2010 Richard was a senior manager in McKinsey & Company, based in the Milan office, advising corporate clients worldwide on strategy and business development. He also worked in the economics group of KPMG Consulting, based in the London office. Richard holds degrees in International Economics and Management from Bocconi University in Milan, and in International Relations from Groningen University in the Netherlands.

​​Dr. Deborah ElmsExecutive Director, Asian Trade Centre

The Asian Trade Centre, based in Singapore, works with governments and companies to design better trade policies for the region. Dr. Elms sits on the International Technical Advisory Committee of the Global Trade Professionals Alliance and is Chair of the Working Group on Trade Policy and Law. She is also a senior fellow in the Singapore Ministry of Trade and Industry’s Trade Academy.

Previously, Dr. Elms was head of the Temasek Foundation Centre for Trade & Negotiations (TFCTN) and Senior Fellow of International Political Economy at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.

Her projects include the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) and global value chains.

She has provided consulting on a range of trade issues to governments including the United Arab Emirates, Sri Lanka, Cambodia, Taiwan, and Singapore.

Dr. Elms received a PhD in political science from the University of Washington, a MA in international relations from the University of Southern California, a bachelor’s degrees from Boston University. Dr. Elms publishes the Talking Trade Blog.

​​Foong Chee Keong Group Head of Regulatory Affairs, Axiata

Foong Chee Kheong is Group Head of Regulatory Affairs, Group Corporate Office, Axiata Group Berhad. CK has about 17 years of experience in telecommunication, with roles in regulatory strategy and policy development with prior experience in network engineering and project management. Prior to this, he was in regulatory management roles in Digi Telecommunications, Celcom Axiata, U Mobile and the Multimedia Development Corporation. CK holds a Bachelor of Science in Electrical and Electronic Engineering from Queen’s University Belfast, United Kingdom and an MBA from University of Strathclyde.

​​Dr. Sufian Jusoh Senior Fellow, CIMB ASEAN Research Institute

Sufian Jusoh is the Deputy Director and Professor of International Trade and Investment at the Institute of Malaysia and International Studies, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia. Sufian is the Chairs of the ASEAN Integration Grand Challenge for Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia.

Sufian is also an External Fellow of the World Trade Institute, University of Bern, Switzerland and a Distinguished Fellow at the Institute of Diplomacy and Foreign Relations, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Malaysia. Sufian is now an International Investment Law Expert at the World Bank Group. Sufian is the Co-Founder of the ASEAN Economic Integration Forum and a Member of the Pacific Economic Cooperation Council Malaysian Chapter. Sufian also plays a key role in the reform of the investment laws in Myanmar, Timor Leste, Laos and the Federated States of Micronesia.

Sufian is a Barrister-at-Law (England and Wales) of Lincoln’s Inn, London. Sufian holds an LL.B from Cardiff Law School, an LL.M (Merit), University College London and a Doctor in Law (summa Cum Laude) from University of Bern, Switzerland.


​​Tan Sri Dr. Munir Majid Chairman, CIMB ASEAN Research Institute President, ASEAN Business Club

Tan Sri Dr. Munir is currently Chairman of CIMB ASEAN Research Institute, of Bank Muamalat Malaysia Berhad, of the Financial Services Professional Board, of ASEAN Business Advisory Council, Malaysia, as well as President of the ASEAN Business Club. He also sits on the board of the Institute of Strategic and International Studies (ISIS) Malaysia and on the Financial Services Talent Council of Bank Negara Malaysia.

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.

​​REGISTRATION Participation is strictly by invitation only. For further enquiries and details kindly email to wood@cariasean.org