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FT ASEAN Economic Summit

Policies and Strategies for an Integrated Market

Kuala Lumpur |
Speakers include:
Datuk Abdul Farid Alias

Datuk Abdul Farid Alias


Nurhaida .

Nurhaida .

Indonesia Financial Services Authority

Sajith Sivanandan

Sajith Sivanandan



On 22nd October 2015 more than 200 business and financial sector leaders, as well as strategists and policy makers from around the region, gathered in Kuala Lumpur for the second annual FT ASEAN Economic Summit. Chaired by the FT’s Emerging Markets Editor James Kynge and Asia Editor David Pilling, the event examined a range of key topics and discussion areas crucial to the success of the ASEAN Economic Community - from rising protectionism by governments and the linking of ASEAN’s capital markets to ASEAN’s education systems and its ability to make full use of technology to innovate.
These themes and trends were discussed in detail during lively panels and keynotes. A key highlight of the day was the keynote interview with Datuk Abdul Farid Alias, Group President and CEO, Maybank.


fallback Add to my Calendar 10/22/2015 08:30:0010/22/2015 17:30:00trueFT ASEAN Economic SummitOn 22nd October 2015 more than 200 business and financial sector leaders, as well as strategists and policy makers from around the region, gathered in Kuala Lumpur for the second annual FT ASEAN Economic Summit. Chaired by the FT’s Emerging Markets Editor James Kynge and Asia Editor David Pilling, the event examined a range of key topics and discussion areas crucial to the success of the ASEAN Economic Community - from rising protectionism by governments and the linking of ASEAN’s capital markets to ASEAN’s education systems and its ability to make full use of technology to innovate.These themes and trends were discussed in detail during lively panels and keynotes. A key highlight of the day was the keynote interview with Datuk Abdul Farid Alias, Group President and CEO, Maybank.VIEW OUR PHOTO GALLERYFT-ASEAN-Economic-Summitca6dc07d901c921491b131e953633c67MM/DD/YYYY

Speakers (18)

Datuk Abdul Farid Alias

Datuk Abdul Farid Alias

Group President and CEO

Datuk Abdul Farid Alias was appointed Group President and CEO of Maybank in August 2013. He also serves as Chairman of the Group EXCO and is a member of the Board’s Credit Review Committee. Prior to his current role, Datuk Farid was Deputy President & Head, Global Banking at Maybank. He joined the Bank as Head of International in 2009. Before joining Maybank, he had over 20 years’ experience in banking with Aseambankers Malaysia, Schroders, Malaysian International Merchant Bankers, JP Morgan and Khazanah Nasional. Datuk Farid is currently a Board member of Maybank Investment Bank, Maybank Ageas Holdings, Etiqa International Holdings, Bank Internasional Indonesia and Cagamas Holdings Berhad, Malaysia’s national mortgage corporation. He is also Chairman of The Association of Banks Malaysia, Vice Chairman of Asian Institute of Chartered Bankers and member of the ASEAN Banking Council, Asian Banker Association, Visa Senior Client Council Program and Investment Panel of Malaysia’s Retirement Fund Incorporated. Datuk Farid is an Emerging Markets Advisory Council member of the Washington-based Institute of International Finance. He was named CEO of the Year at the ASEAN Business Awards Malaysia 2015. He holds a BSc in Accounting from Pennsylvania State University, USA; an MBA in Finance from Denver University, USA, and has attended Harvard Business School’s Advanced Management Program.  

Nurhaida .

Nurhaida .

Chief Executive, Capital Market Supervision
Indonesia Financial Services Authority

Nurhaida has been the Chief Executive of Capital Market Supervision, Indonesia Financial Services Authority / Otoritas Jasa Keuangan (OJK), since July 2012. In this position, Nurhaida is responsible for the regulatory and supervisory activities on the overall Capital Market industry in Indonesia. Prior to this, Nurhaida was the Chairperson of Indonesia Capital Market and Financial Institution Supervisory Agency (Bapepam-LK), the capital markets and non-bank financial institutions regulator in Indonesia prior to the establishment of Indonesia Financial Services Agency. Her career in the capital market industry supervision spans more than 20 years. Nurhaida graduated from the Institute of Textile Technology, Bandung, Indonesia and earned her Master of Business Administration from Indiana University, Bloomington, USA.

Sajith Sivanandan

Sajith Sivanandan

Managing Director, Malaysia, Vietnam, Philippines and New Emerging Markets

Sajith Sivanandan is the Managing Director of Google Malaysia, Vietnam, Philippines and New Emerging Markets, where he oversees sales and business development operations as well as developing strategic plans in these countries. He was previously Head of Travel for Google Southeast Asia. Before joining Google, Mr Sivanandan was the Director of Market Development and Consumer Insights at Affle UK Ltd., a mobile media start-up where he worked on business partnerships with mobile operators and advertisers. Prior to Affle UK, Mr Sivanandan held key sales and management positions at the Gallup Organisation and Star TV (part of News Corp.). Mr Sivanandan holds a Master's degree in Business Management with Distinction (majoring in Finance) from the Asian Institute of Management, an MBA (majoring in Marketing) from the Fore School of Management in New Delhi, and a Bachelor's degree with Honours (majoring in History) from Delhi University.

Sanjay Kalra

Sanjay Kalra

Deputy Division Chief
International Monetary Fund

Sanjay Kalra is Deputy Division Chief at the International Monetary Fund. He is currently in the Secretary’s Department which supports the Office of the Managing Director and Executive Board of the IMF. Prior to this, Dr Kalra was the IMF Resident Representative for Vietnam and Lao PDR based in Hanoi, Vietnam from October 2011 to July 2015. He joined the IMF in 1994, and has worked on a range of countries in the Asia and Pacific Department (Japan, Thailand, Mongolia, Nepal, Bhutan, Brunei Darussalam) and European Department (Slovenia, FYR Macedonia, Albania, Iceland, Luxembourg). During 2010-11, he was a Visiting Scholar at the Monetary Authority of Singapore and at Columbia University Business School, NY. Prior to joining the IMF, Dr Kalra was Assistant Professor in Economics at Tufts University, Medford, MA, and has also taught at Columbia University and New York University. He holds degrees in Economics from Columbia University, New York, (M Phil. and PhD), Delhi School of Economics (MA) and Delhi University (BA). He has published extensively on macroeconomic and international trade and policy issues.

Douglas Foo

Douglas Foo

Founder and Executive Chairman
Sakae Holdings

As Founder and Executive Chairman of Sakae Holdings Ltd., Douglas Foo led the growth and development of the Group, which has since established over 200 outlets worldwide. Mr Foo continues to spearhead the overall strategic direction and management of the Group’s global strategic plans, including its philanthropic initiatives. As a testament of his outstanding entrepreneurial efforts, Mr Foo is the recipient of numerous illustrious awards including the Rotary-ASME Entrepreneur of the Year in 2002 and ASEAN-China Young Entrepreneur Award in 2011. For his tireless efforts in philanthropic and voluntary contributions to society, he received the Public Service Star Award in 2013 from His Excellency, the President of the Republic of Singapore. In September 2013, Mr Foo was selected to attend the prestigious Eisenhower Fellowship in the USA. Through his fellowship, he has broadened his perspectives and will apply this invaluable knowledge to strengthen the Group. Mr Foo serves as a director on numerous boards for corporate, governmental and non-profit organisations. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration (Finance) from the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology University.

Nuraizah Shamsul Baharin

Nuraizah Shamsul Baharin

Managing Director
Madcat World

Nuraizah Shamsul Baharin is the Managing Director of Madcat World, a multimedia company that produces consumer and enterprise mobile applications with over 1.2 million downloaded apps in 201 countries. In 2006 Ms Shamsul launched CWorks Mobile, which was to become Madcat World in 2011. Madcat was a finalist in the Best Startup Company and Best Mobile Application categories for the 2011 NEF-Awani Awards. Ms Shamsul began her career with Motorola Malaysia, working in Malaysia, Germany and Scotland. She was awarded two technical excellence and three productivity excellence awards. Ms Shamsul believes that women are key drivers of today’s global economy. She is a Council Member of Malaysia’s Women Advisory and Consultative Council and Regional Coordinator for Technovation, a mobile application development program for girls. Ms Shamsul is the Honorary Past President of the Association of Bumiputra Women Entrepreneur Network of Malaysia (WENA) where she served from 2012-2014. She also serves in NGOs Peniagawati and NEF. In her free time, she is a mentor with Cradle Investment Program since 2006. She managed MCMC’s 2015 Appsterboss hackathon; Maxis’ Mobile Content Challenge 2009-2012 and Cyberkids 2014 outreach to universities and schools. In 2014 she helped set up the ASEAN Women Entrepreneur Network (AWEN), as the first country representative to promote business opportunities among ASEAN women entrepreneurs. Ms Shamsul was 2013’s Woman Technopreneur from NEF-Awani ICT Awards and was ranked in the top five finalists for NTV7’s Bella Awards for Business Category. She also won the 2011 Great Women of Our Times Awards for Science and Technology from Malaysian Women’s Weekly. Ms Shamsul graduated as an Electrical Engineer from the University of Michigan.

Amirul Feisal Bin Wan Zahir

Amirul Feisal Bin Wan Zahir

Group Head Global Banking

Amirul Feisal Bin Wan Zahir is the Group Head of Global Banking for Malayan Banking Berhad (Maybank) Group and is responsible for the global wholesale banking operations throughout the Bank’s presence in 19 countries. Mr Zahir started his career in the audit division at KPMG Plc. in London, before joining Citigroup in Singapore and Hong Kong as Vice President of Citigroup Global Markets (formerly Schroders Investment Banking) between 1997 and 2004, where he worked on various investment banking assignments across Asia. After Citigroup, Mr Zahir became an Executive Director and shareholder of boutique financial advisory firm BinaFikir, until the firm was acquired by Maybank Investment Bank Berhad (formerly Aseambankers Berhad), the investment banking arm of Maybank. Subsequently, Mr Zahir became Managing Director, Head of Investment Banking at Maybank Investment Bank. In this role, he was instrumental in reviving the bank’s leadership in the equity capital market and advisory functions. Mr Zahir has also held senior management positions in various non-banking entities, including Permodalan Nasional Berhad (PNB), the country’s largest fund management company, where he was tasked with reviewing PNB’s portfolio of strategic investments and developing strategies for value enhancement. Most recently he served as Group Managing Director of Chemical Company of Malaysia Berhad (CCM), a government-linked public-listed company. Mr Zahir left CCM to rejoin the Maybank Group in October 2014 in his current role as Group Head of Global Banking. He has a Bachelor of Science Honours Degree in Economics (Accounting and Finance) from The London School of Economics and Political Science. Mr Zahir is a qualified Chartered Accountant, a member of the Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants England and Wales, and the Malaysian Institute of Accountants.

Samuel Fischer

Samuel Fischer

President, Greater China and Asia

Sam Fischer is President, Greater China and Asia for Diageo. He is a member of Diageo PLC’s Executive Committee, with responsibilities spanning Diageo’s businesses across the region. Since joining Diageo in 2007 as General Manager of the Indochina region, Mr Fischer has held various roles, including Managing Director of Southeast Asia and Managing Director of Greater China. In this position, his responsibilities included all Diageo businesses in China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macau, including the Shui Jing Fang company in Chengdu and the Chinese White Spirits business unit. He was also a member of the Asia Pacific Executive Committee. Based in Singapore, Mr Fischer is one of BoardAgender’s SG50 Champions of Change, in recognition of his support for gender diversity in the Singapore business landscape. Mr Fischer graduated from the University of South Australia with a Bachelor of Business (Finance and Marketing) and has completed the Columbia Business School Executive Development Program.

Thomas Riber Knudsen

Thomas Riber Knudsen

Damco Asia

Thomas Riber Knudsen has been the Chief Executive Officer of Damco Asia since May 2014.  He is responsible for developing and executing Damco’s regional strategy and leading more than 5,000 employees in Asia. Prior to his current position, Mr Knudsen was Regional CEO, Maersk Line Asia Pacific region and before that Managing Director for Maersk Line in East China. Mr Knudsen joined the A.P. Moller-Maersk Group in 1990 as a management trainee. With more than 20 years of experience in the container shipping industry, he has held leadership, commercial, trade and route management roles in the Middle East, North America, Europe and Asia.  He also had a year’s experience in 2006 heading the then Maersk Logistics in France overseeing France, Tunisia and Algeria. Mr Knudsen holds an Executive Masters of Management in Supply Chain from IE Business School, Madrid Spain.

U Moe Kyaw

U Moe Kyaw

Founder, Myanmar Marketing Research & Development and Senior Advisor
Nielsen MMRD

U Moe Kyaw is the founder of Myanmar Marketing Research & Development [MMRD]. In 2014 MMRD’s research division joint ventured with Nielsen to become the largest and leading provider of market research. MMRD has also been the joint venture partner for BATES advertising for 10 years, allowing MMRD to work with nearly all the GOs, INGOs, MNCs and leading FMCG companies that have an interest in Myanmar and the Indochina region. U Moe Kyaw has been an ASEAN Business Council member since 2011, and has been a leading voice of the Myanmar business community over the last 15 years, representing the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry with the portfolio of Secretary to the ACMECS Business Council and executive board member of the GMS Business Advisory Council. With these portfolios he has been a speaker and moderator at hundreds of forums around the region. He also holds the position of Secretary of the National Economic Social Advisory Council, which is a Presidential Council, CEC of UMFCCI, Treasurer of the Yangon Heritage Trust and secretary of the reinstated Yangon Rotary Club. Born and Educated in London with a honours degree in Engineering from Westminister University, U Moe Kyaw returned to Myanmar in 1990 to be an entrepreneur. He is going to retire soon to be a stand-up comedian and to remind everyone that one in every six AseAn earns less than US$1.5 a day.

Tadashi Maeda

Tadashi Maeda

Representative Director and Senior Managing Director
Japan Bank for International Cooperation

Tadashi Maeda has held various positions at JBIC, including Representative in Washington, Head of Delegation to OECD Trade Finance Committee, Director General of Energy, Natural Resources Finance Group, Director General of Corporate Planning Department, Managing Executive Officer & Global Head of Infrastructure Finance Group. Between 2010 and 2012 he served as Special Advisor to the Cabinet and provided the Prime Minister and Chief Cabinet Secretary with advice on new economic growth strategy, energy policy and infrastructure development policy to the international market. He also served as member of the Steering Committee of Nuclear Damage Liability Facilitation Fund Steering Committee from 2011 to 2013. Currently he is a member of the advisory board of International Institute of Strategic Studies (IISS), a UK based think tank. Mr Maeda graduated from the University of Tokyo, Faculty of Law in 1980.

Jayant  Menon

Jayant Menon

Lead Economist (Trade and Regional Cooperation), Economic Research and Regional Cooperation Department
Asian Development Bank

Jayant Menon is Lead Economist at the Asian Development Bank in Manila, Philippines, where he works on trade, international investment and development issues, and leads the Trade Team. He holds adjunct appointments with the Australian National University, University of Nottingham, UK and Cambodian Institute for Cooperation and Peace, and serves on the Advisory Board of the University of Nottingham Campus in Malaysia. Prior to joining ADB, he worked as an academic in Australia for more than a decade, mainly at the Centre of Policy Studies at Monash University in Melbourne. He is the author or co-author of more than one hundred academic publications, mostly on trade and development, and particularly as they relate to Asia.

Joel Neoh

Joel Neoh


Joel Neoh is a Malaysian entrepreneur and investor. He is currently the Founder of KFit, a fitness sharing platform in 10 countries across Asia Pacific. He was previously the founder of GroupsMore, which became Groupon Malaysia in 2010. In senior VP roles and as Head of Groupon Asia Pacific from 2013 to 2015, Mr Neoh was instrumental in establishing the high-growth business model that propelled the organisation into a multibillion-dollar business with thousands of employees across 12 countries. Under his leadership, Groupon Malaysia was named on the 2013 WorldBlu Most Democratic Workplaces list. Mr Neoh started his first company at age 20 while studying engineering at Monash University, Australia. He was the inaugural winner of The Firm, Malaysia's version of The Apprentice, in 2007, when he was the youngest contestant at the age of 23. Mr Neoh has co-founded several successful companies, including, which merged with Catcha Media in 2013, and invested in a string of technology venture capital funds and startups across Asia. In 2012, Mr Neoh won the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award for the Emerging Entrepreneur category in Malaysia. In 2013, he was named one of Asia's Top 10 entrepreneurs, as well as Young Global Leader, by World Economic Forum and was also honored to receive the Malaysian Service Medal. In 2014, Mr Neoh received a Creative Pioneer Award and was included on Malaysia Business’s 30 Successful Malaysian’s Under 40 list. Mr Neoh sits on the board of the publicly listed REV Asia, which he co-founded in 2013, and is an advisory board member of Monash School of Business and AIESEC, the world’s largest student organisation. He completed his studies at Monash University and Harvard Business School and has lived in a number of Asia Pacific cities, including Tokyo, Seoul, Taipei, Sydney and Singapore.

David Robinson

David Robinson

Principal (Asean)
FT Confidential Research

David Robinson heads up FT Confidential Research’s Asean research – focusing on Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, the Philippines and Vietnam – and is based in London. Mr Robinson has a lot of experience both as a journalist and editor and in writing about emerging markets. Prior to joining the FT, he spent a number of years based in Hong Kong writing about business and finance.

Hanno  Stegmann

Hanno Stegmann

Asia Pacific Internet Group (APACIG)

Hanno Stegmann serves as Co-Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Asia Pacific Internet Group (APACIG) – the Asia-Pacific Investment JV of Rocket Internet & Ooredoo and home to some of Asia’s most successful internet companies. Prior to his role at APACIG, Mr Stegmann spent several years as CFO and Managing Director of SevenVentures GmbH, a leading German venture fund, and as Vice President M&A, responsible for the digital acquisition projects of ProSiebenSat.1 Media AG. Before joining P7S1, Mr Stegmann was employed as a strategy consultant at the Boston Consulting Group, where he worked on various strategy and M&A assignments around the globe. Mr Stegmann graduated from the University of St. Gallen, Switzerland, with a degree in Business Administration, and he holds an MBA with distinction from INSEAD in Fontainebleau.

Bala Swaminathan

Bala Swaminathan

President and General Manager
Westpac International

Bala Swaminathan is President for Westpac’s International businesses, with overall responsibility for its businesses in Asia, Europe and the Americas. He is also an Executive Member of Westpac’s Asia Advisory Board. Mr Swaminathan joined Westpac as the President for Asia in 2012 with the responsibility of growing the Bank’s footprint and supporting Westpac’s customers in Asia. In 2014, his role was expanded to cover Westpac’s Europe and North American operations with the aim of connecting Westpac’s global customers to the increasing global trade, capital and people flows across the Asian region, Europe and Americas. With almost two decades of banking experience in Asia, Mr Swaminathan has a proven track record in building regional businesses. Immediately prior to joining Westpac, Mr Swaminathan worked with Bank of America Merrill Lynch as its Vice Chairman and Managing Director, Global Corporate and Investment Banking, where he was responsible for providing the strategic direction for the bank’s corporate and investment banking businesses in India. Before that, Mr Swaminathan headed up the origination and client coverage business for South and South East Asia at Standard Chartered Bank, where he was responsible for corporate and institutional clients in key markets like Singapore, India and Indonesia. During this time he also worked briefly in the office of the CEO of Standard Chartered Bank to evolve the inorganic strategy of the Bank during the global financial crisis of 2008. Prior to that, Mr Swaminathan was Head of Corporate Bank of ICICI Bank and oversaw the transformation of ICICI from a project finance institution to a commercial bank. He joined ICICI as its CFO from KPMG where he was a partner overseeing the financial sector. Mr Swaminathan began his career as a banking auditor with KPMG in Asia, where he was promoted to a partner. Mr Swaminathan has been an independent board member on several boards of listed companies in India and was an advisory board member of Standard Chartered Private Bank. He is a chartered accountant and has completed an Advanced Management Programme at Harvard Business School.

Anthony Tan

Anthony Tan

Group CEO and Co-Founder

Anthony Tan co-founded GrabTaxi with his Harvard Business School classmate, Tan Hooi Ling, after their plan to revamp the Malaysian taxi industry won second place in Harvard’s Business Plan Contest in 2011. Mr Tan kept hearing about the many problems plaguing this industry and these problems spurred him to revamp the Malaysian taxi system. By introducing an a¬ffordable, mobile-based technology to both the supply (taxi drivers) and demand (passengers) sides of the two-sided platform; GrabTaxi has truly improved the safety, speed and certainty of the taxi ecosystem. The taxi industry also holds a very special place in Mr Tan’s heart – his great grandfather was a taxi driver. Combining the knowledge and skills developed from his previous roles in Lazard Freres (Analyst), Renault Paris (Strategy Marketing) and Tan Chong Group (Head of Marketing & Head of Group Supply Chain), he is actively involved in the expansion, marketing and product development plans for GrabTaxi in the region. His greatest satisfaction is seeing GrabTaxi change the daily lives of GrabTaxi’s customers and taxi drivers throughout the region.

Soulysak Thamnuvong

Soulysak Thamnuvong

Deputy Secretary General
Lao Securities Commission

Mr. Soulysak Thamnuvong assumed office as Deputy Secretary General of Lao Securities Commission Office in June 2014. He is responsible for three divisions: the Securities Issuance Supervision Division, the Securities Intermediaries Supervision Division, and the Legal Division. Prior to this, Mr Thamnuvong was Director of the Monetary and Exchange Rate Policies Division at the Bank of the Lao PDR. Between 2011 and 2013 he worked as Advisor to an Executive Director at the International Monetary Fund in Washington DC. From 2008 to 2011, he served as Secretary to the Deputy Governor of Bank of the Lao PDR, and prior to that, he was Deputy Director of the Monetary and Exchange Rate Policies Division at the Bank of the Lao PDR. Mr Thamnuvong began his career with the Bank of the Lao PDR as Banking Supervisor in 1992. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Economics from Thammasat University, Thailand, a diploma degree in Economic Development under a scholarship at the Institute of Developing Economies, Japan, and a Master’s degree in Development Economics from Williams College, US.


Co-Chairs (2)

James  Kynge

James Kynge

Global China Editor
Financial Times

James Kynge is Global China Editor at the Financial Times. He was previously Emerging Markets Editor. He is also Editor of beyondbrics, the FT’s emerging economies blog. Previously, Mr Kynge was Principal of FT Confidential, the Financial Times’ premium research services on China, South East Asia and Latin America. He remains Chairman of FT Confidential. A recipient of several journalism awards, Mr Kynge has been a correspondent based in Japan, China, Taiwan, Malaysia, Singapore, Russia, former Soviet Central Asia and Hong Kong over the past 28 years. He was China Bureau Chief for seven years until 2005 and later headed up the Pearson Group of companies' business operations in China. He was also President of, the FT's Chinese language website. His prize-winning book China Shakes the World was an international bestseller, translated into 19 languages.

David Pilling

David Pilling

Africa Editor
Financial Times

David Pilling is the Africa Editor of the FT. Previously he was the Asia Editor (2008-16), Tokyo Bureau Chief (2002-08), Pharmaceuticals Correspondent (1999-2001), Deputy Features Editor (1997-99) and Chile/Argentina Correspondent (1993-97). He is the author of Bending Adversity: Japan and the Art of Survival (Penguin, 2014) and The Growth Delusion (Bloomsbury, 2018).

Why Attend?

  • Hear from policy-makers, business leaders and investors on how they are preparing for ASEAN's economic integration
  • Gain insights from experts on the policies and business strategies required to maximise the opportunities generated by a single ASEAN market
  • Explore the impact of external drivers, from the fall in oil prices to the increased interest from investors in Japan and China, on ASEAN's future growth
  • Network with senior representatives from governments, businesses and financial institutions from across ASEAN and beyond, and with journalists from the Financial Times

Agenda - 22nd Oct

  • 8:30am
    Breakfast and Registration
  • 9:25am
    Welcome Remarks

    James Kynge, Emerging Markets Editor, Financial Times

  • 9:35am
    Keynote Introduction

    Jayant Menon, Lead Economist (Trade and Regional Cooperation), Economic Research and Regional Cooperation Department, Asian Development Bank

  • 9:45am
    Panel: Are Governments and Business Sufficiently Aligned to Make the ASEAN Economic Community Succeed? Can Rising Protectionism be Overcome?

    Hopes that economic integration will be implemented by end-2015, at least for core ASEAN countries, have been dampened by delays in efforts to harmonise customs procedures and other key regulations and standards. In fact, some larger member-nations have become even more protectionist, pressured by local companies fearful of losing market share and by concerns over the slowdown in China and other external risks. While ASEAN’s less developed nations, which are even further behind on implementation, could be forgiven for protecting national industries, the fact that some of the bloc’s largest economies are concerned about opening vast domestic markets to regional rivals could be a major barrier to an effective AEC. What can be done to resolve this situation? Are the benefits of integration extolled by governments fully understood by private sector players? Should ASEAN’s frontier markets be concerned that the AEC will deepen development imbalances rather than eliminate them? What major changes are required within industry and society to ensure that integration is accompanied by sustained rapid economic growth? What should member-states do to address the region’s low productivity rates?

    Samuel Fischer, President, Greater China and Asia, Diageo
    U Moe Kyaw, Founder, Myanmar Marketing Research & Development and Senior Advisor, Nielsen MMRD
    Jayant Menon, Lead Economist (Trade and Regional Cooperation), Economic Research and Regional Cooperation Department, Asian Development Bank

    Moderator: James Kynge, Emerging Markets Editor, Financial Times

  • 10:40am
    Keynote Interview

    Datuk Abdul Farid Alias, Group President and CEO, Maybank

    Moderator: David Pilling, Asia Editor, Financial Times

  • 11:10am
    Networking Break
  • 11:30am
    Panel: Will the Increasing Investment from Japan, China, Korea and India be More Transformative for ASEAN Than Economic Integration?

    As ASEAN strives to fully integrate, companies in Japan, China, Korea, and to some extent India are already positioning themselves for the benefits of a single regional market. Direct investment by Japanese businesses in Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam alone already accounts for more than one tenth of Japan’s total overseas investment. China aims to more than double two-way trade with ASEAN to US$1 trillion in 2020. Rivalry between leading powers is already being felt in Cambodia, Laos and other frontier markets where big infrastructure projects are up for grabs. How transformative will these capital inflows be for the region’s economies as a whole? Could the AEC turn out to be even more beneficial to outside investors than to ASEAN-based businesses? What impact will greater competition from Japan, China and other countries have on the expansion of local businesses? To what extent will the geopolitical aspects affect ASEAN government strategy? 

    Sanjay Kalra, Deputy Division Chief, International Monetary Fund
    Tadashi Maeda, Senior Managing Director, Japan Bank for International Cooperation

    Moderator: David Pilling, Asia Editor, Financial Times

  • 12:20pm
    Dialogue: Linking ASEAN’s Capital Markets

    Although much work has been done on the integration of ASEAN's capital markets, there are a number of areas that are still unresolved. So far only three exchanges have joined the ASEAN Trading Link, which would allow brokers to deal directly in regional markets, as the industry waits for more progress on cross-border clearing, settlement and custody services. And regulators are still working on a framework for cross-border equity and debt offerings. What is required to accelerate progress towards a single ASEAN capital market? Key financial industry representatives share their views.

    Nurhaida, Chief Executive, Capital Market Supervision, Indonesia Financial Services Authority
    Bala Swaminathan, President and General Manager, Westpac International
    Soulysak Thamnuvong, Deputy Secretary General, Lao Securities Commission Office
    Amirul Feisal Bin Wan Zahir, Group Head Global Banking, Maybank

    Moderator: James Kynge, Emerging Markets Editor, Financial Times

  • 1:10pm
    Networking Lunch
  • 2:15pm
    Presentation: THE ASEAN ECONOMIC COMMUNITY (AEC): What Does the Man in the Street Think (And Does He Care)?

    David Robinson, Principal (Asean), FT Confidential Research

  • 2:30pm
    Panel: Does ASEAN Have the Education Systems and Technological Depth to be Able to Produce and Sustain Innovation?

    The potential opportunities from ASEAN integration have thrown into focus the need to boost productivity and the readiness of the region’s businesses and economies to compete effectively. A key factor is the level of education, skills training and technological access and expertise that will allow each country to take full advantage of digital and other advances and sustain a high standard of innovation across industries, services and society. While big cities in Southeast Asia have large numbers of social media users, due to some extent to low-priced smartphones, the use by various industries of disruptive technologies such as the Internet of things, big data, cloud technology and robotics needs to expand, along with the supporting infrastructure, while education should focus more on the digital future. What can policy-makers do in the short term to address this innovation gap? What can ASEAN learn from China whose technology revolution, built on virtually no legacy, allowed it to leapfrog almost every other global economy? Can ASEAN create the cohesion between research, education, technology and finance found in hubs like Silicon Valley? As technology transforms processes in both big companies and SMEs, how will governments deal with the impact on jobs?

    Nuraizah Shamsul Baharin, Managing Director, Madcat World
    Joel Neoh, Founder, KFit
    Sajith Sivanandan, Managing Director, Malaysia, Vietnam, Philippines and New Emerging Markets, Google
    Hanno Stegmann, Co-CEO, Asia Pacific Internet Group (APACIG)

    Moderator: James Kynge, Emerging Markets Editor, Financial Times

  • 3:20pm
    Networking Break
  • 3:40pm
    Panel: Are ASEAN Companies and Multinationals Ready to Compete for Regional Market Share? Can ASEAN Brands Become Global Challengers?

    A number of ASEAN-based and multinational companies have already begun positioning themselves for a single market, expanding in a specific country and across the region, either organically or by acquiring competitors. Consolidation is expected to accelerate as the AEC is implemented, with competition likely to intensify. As ASEAN brands build up their presence in multiple Southeast Asian economies, can their growth become the springboard for expansion beyond the region? What are the key strategic and operational drivers behind a successful global campaign? Do ASEAN managers have the right mindset to become global champions? What challenges do multinationals face in expanding across ASEAN? What is the most effective business model given the variety of markets in the region? Which countries and sectors offer the most promise? CEOs from leading ASEAN and multinational brands share their insights.

    Douglas Foo, Founder and Executive Chairman, Sakae Holdings
    Thomas Riber Knudsen, CEO, Damco Asia
    Anthony Tan, Group CEO and Co-Founder, GrabTaxi

    Moderator: David Pilling, Asia Editor, Financial Times

  • 4:30pm
    Closing Remarks

    James Kynge, Emerging Markets Editor, Financial Times

  • 4:45pm
    Networking Drinks Reception

Who Attends?

The FT ASEAN Economic Summit is aimed at senior or board-level attendees - typically C-Suite, VP and Director level - from global and local corporations. This will include:

  • Southeast Asian and International Corporations
  • Financial Industry Leaders
  • Institutional Investors
  • Advisors

Our previous attendees included:

  • AIAC Group
  • Aquarius Investment Advisors Pte Ltd
  • Asiaspace Sdn Bhd
  • Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria SA
  • Booz Allen Hamilton
  • Cargill Asia Pacific Pte Ltd
  • Charoen Pokphand Foods Public Co., Ltd.
  • Clifford Chance Pte Ltd
  • Continental Automotive Holding Co.,Ltd
  • DBS Bank Ltd
  • Dentsu Aegis Network
  • Deriv Asia
  • Du Pont Company (Singapore) Pte Ltd
  • Eastspring Investments, Singapore
  • Elitehill Real Estate Pte Ltd
  • Ernst & Young Solutions LLP
  • Fortress Investment Group
  • Gateway Fund Company Pte Ltd
  • Global Business Brains Pte Ltd
  • Holdingham Group (Asia) Pte Ltd
  • Huntsworth plc
  • IL&FS Financial Services Limited
  • International Enterprise Singapore
  • Jurien Bay International Ltd
  • Keppel Reit
  • Khazanah Research Institute
  • Lazada Group
  • Lion Global Investors Limited
  • LVMH
  • McGraw Hill Financial
  • McKinsey Global Institute
  • Monetary Authority of Singapore
  • Moody's Investors Service
  • NAB
  • Nanyang Technological University
  • Nikkei Group Asia
  • Noble Resources International Pte Ltd
  • OECD Tokyo Centre
  • Pramerica Real Estate Investors (Asia) Pte Ltd
  • Prime Minister's Department, Putrajaya
  • Prudential
  • PT Indonesia Infrastructure Finance
  • Rainforest Investment Ltd
  • Ramunia Energy and Marine Corporation Sdn Bhd
  • Rowsley Ltd
  • RSA Insurance
  • SABMiller (Asia)
  • Saturna Sdn Bhd
  • SC Capital Partners Pte Ltd
  • Serge Pun & Associates
  • Shell
  • Simon Hunt Strategic Services
  • Standard & Poor's
  • Standard Chartered
  • State Street Global Advisors
  • Taiwan International Ports Corporation
  • The Boston Consulting Group
  • U.S. Treasury
  • Unilever Asia Private Limited
  • United Overseas Bank
  • UOB Ltd
  • VinaCapital Investment Management Singapore


Hilton Kuala Lumpur
3 Jalan Stesen Sentral
Kuala Lumpur 50470


Tel: +60-3-2264-2264


Event Background

By the end of 2015, the 10 nations of ASEAN are scheduled to be integrated into a single market of 600 million people with an overall GDP of around US$2.3 trillion. The impact of the ASEAN Economic Community on trade, business and investment will be enormous -- reinforcing the region’s potential as an economic and commercial powerhouse.

However, much still needs to be done for full economic integration to become a reality. A number of harmonisation measures, particularly around capital markets, are already in place, but others are behind schedule, due to a combination of bureaucratic overload and protectionist pressures. As Malaysia assumes the Chairmanship of ASEAN, questions also remain as to whether ASEAN has the institutional structure to maintain an effective Economic Community, how the needs of economies at different levels of development will be addressed, and what steps have to be taken to reverse the region's historically low productivity rates.

While integration efforts continue at an administrative level, many businesses are already accelerating expansion plans in the expectation of tariff-free trade and the free movement of labour, throwing renewed focus on disruptive technologies, skills training, and the other key elements that will form the core of a successful region-wide growth strategy.

These issues and more will be explored in detail at the second Financial Times ASEAN Economic Summit, which will gather some of the leading minds from government, business and finance to share their vision for ASEAN and discuss the challenges and opportunities ahead.


Organiser (1)

The Financial Times is one of the world’s leading business news organisations, recognised internationally for its authority, integrity and accuracy. The FT has a record paying readership of one million, three-quarters of which are digital subscriptions. It is part of Nikkei Inc., which provides a broad range of information, news and services for the global business community.

Gold Sponsor (1)

Maybank Islamic Berhad, a subsidiary of the Malaysia-based Malayan Banking Berhad (Maybank) is the largest Islamic banking player in the Asia Pacific region and one of the top 5 in the world, in terms of asset size. Established on 1 January 2008, it aims to meet the challenging developments in the Islamic Banking world and Islamic financial needs with its wide range of products and services, now available through 8 dedicated branches and co-located across all 454 Maybank branches in Malaysia, 388 branches in Indonesia, 21 branches in Singapore as well more than 50 touchpoints in Hong Kong and London.

In Malaysia, it holds a market share of 34% of Islamic financing and 30% of deposit and investment account of deposit as at Financial Year ended December 2017. For the same period, its total assets stood at USD50 billion, a growth of 11% year-on-year. As an entity operating on a dual-banking platform, Maybank Islamic is regarded as the most successful Islamic subsidiary bank leveraging on its parent bank’s infrastructure and resources. In 2017, the bank contributed to 56.9% of the Group’s financing assets.

Moving forward, the Bank will continue to leverage on its position as the leading bank in ASEAN to further intensify cross-border linkages within the region, the Middle East and key financial centres across the world. 

Networking Drinks Reception Sponsor (1)

Westpac in Asia

Westpac Banking Corporation (Westpac) was founded in 1817 and was the first bank established in Australia. 

Westpac provides a broad range of financial services to commercial, corporate, institutional and government customers and individuals with connections to Australia and New Zealand. Westpac Group employs approximately 36,000 people and has three key customer facing divisions through which we serve around 12 million customers.

Westpac Institutional Bank

Westpac institutional Bank is the leading Relationship Bank in Australia. Our client-led strategy operates through dedicated industry relationship and specialist product teams with expert knowledge in transactional banking, financial and debt capital markets, specialised capital, and alternative investment solutions.

Our Asian presence has been established since 1971, with branches in Hong Kong, Beijing, Shanghai, Singapore, Mumbai and a representative office in Jakarta.

Westpac Banking Group - History

Westpac has a proud banking heritage spanning 200 years. Today the company remains a pillar of financial strength, AA- ²rated across the globe and has also been named as the 10th most sustainable corporation in the world and the highest rated bank globally¹. From this position of strength, we are focused on growing our presence and capabilities across the Asian region.

1 World Economic Forum in Davos 2013. 

2 AA- by Fitch

Supporting Partners (8)

The American Chamber of Commerce in Singapore is the largest and most active foreign chamber in Singapore, with over 5,500 members representing more than 700 companies. AmCham advocates for its members' interests to the highest levels of government in Singapore and Washington D.C. and provides its members business insights and connections. With an estimated US$229 billion, the United States is Singapore’s largest source of foreign direct investment.

The British Chamber of Commerce, Singapore (BritCham) is one of the country’s leading business forums, open to executives and businesses of all nationalities. The Chamber network is an engaged and dynamic business community of more than 2,600 executives representing over 400 companies. We provide connections, insights and information for businesses, focusing on delivering quality support to our growing membership base through currently 15 Business Groups. We organise over 90 events a year offering frequent and diverse opportunities for networking and exchange.

The EU-ASEAN Business Council (EU-ABC) is the primary voice for European business within the ASEAN region, being endorsed by the European Commission and recognised as such by the ASEAN Secretariat. Independent of both bodies, the Council has been established to help promote the interests of European businesses operating within ASEAN and to advocate for changes in policies and regulations which would help promote trade and investment between Europe and the ASEAN region.

The European Chamber of Commerce, Singapore (EuroCham) has the mission to represent the common interests of the European business community in promoting bilateral trade, services and investments between Europe and Singapore and Asia-Pacific. It was established in 1991 as the European Business Association and has been active since 2001 when it became a Chamber of Commerce. EuroCham is a non-profit membership fee-based organization with a membership composed of the European National Business Groups (NBGs) in Singapore as well direct corporate members.

FT Confidential Research provides independent analysis and statistical insight into emerging markets to global investors, fund managers, consultants and central banks among others. With a network of on-the-ground researchers who interview thousands of consumers and hundreds of companies on a regular basis to generate proprietary data our in-house experts provide reliable analysis on emerging markets trends in key sectors such as consumer, finance, real estate and infrastructure.

InvestKL is a Government entity under the purview of the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI), Ministry of Federal Territories and PEMANDU, the Performance Management and Delivery Unit under the Prime Minister’s Department. InvestKL works with other Government Ministries, entities and agencies to formulate attractive fiscal packages, and help corporations identify business opportunities while strengthening their competitiveness regionally and globally. Overseen by the Prime Minister’s Office, reporting to three ministers and headed by CEO Datuk Zainal Amanshah, InvestKL focuses on attracting large global multinationals such as Fortune 500 and Forbes 2000 companies to set up their regional business, innovation and talent hubs in Greater Kuala Lumpur and strategically grow their business in Asia.

About MICCI - Malaysian International Chamber of Commerce & Industry
Founded in 1837, the Malaysian International Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MICCI) is Malaysia's longest established trade association.
With close to 1000 corporate members representing over 30 countries including Malaysia, MICCI is recognized as one of the most active advocates for the business community.
MICCI’s mission is to facilitate and support Members in their goal to successfully develop their business in Malaysia through its engagement with both Federal and State governments.

The Singapore International Chamber of Commerce (SICC) is a wholly independent, not-for-profit business association. Founded in Singapore in 1837, it is the region’s oldest Chamber of Commerce. It represents close to 700 companies from 20 industry sectors and over 40 nationalities. Its founding mission remains the same, which is to stand up for Singapore as a business hub and for its members’ business interests. This is still its mission today. SICC achieves this by understanding its members’ business concerns and advocating them to the government and its agencies with the aims of achieving greater mutual understanding, practical solutions and lasting benefits for business.

Supporting Media Partners (6)

Launched in March 2015, ASEAN Forum is an independent newsprint business magazine devoted to Southeast Asia. Written by experienced locally-based journalists, the magazine provides an insightful perspective on how the business community is moving towards the advent of the ASEAN Economic Community. It includes in-depth analysis of the top business news, as well as invaluable statistical information on the region’s key trade. Articles include interviews with all the key regional business players as well as investigative features on property, trade, economics, tourism, industry, agribusiness, the latest technology and green issues. We also commission unique opinion pieces by many of the region’s leading business thinkers.

Asia Briefing Ltd. is dedicated to providing individuals and enterprises with the latest business and regulatory news as well as expert commentary relating to conducting business in emerging Asia. The publishing house is a fully-owned subsidiary of Dezan Shira & Associates - a specialty foreign direct investment consulting firm with offices in China, Hong Kong, India, Vietnam and Singapore, alliances in Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines and Thailand, as well as liaison offices in Italy, Germany and the United States.

Asian Property Review

Filled with intelligent and incisive articles, the magazine is targeted at investors, HNWIs, property professionals, corporations and anyone who is passionate about property. We aim to give you the scoops, behind-the-scene stories, in-depth reports, market trends, and tips on how to maximise the opportunities offered by properties in the Asian-Pacific region. To be distributed across key cities in Asia such as Singapore, Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, Jakarta, Tokyo, Manila, Taipei and Bangkok, the magazine will help you navigate through all the complexities of investing in Asia and beyond. This is truly the definitive guide to property investment in Asia.

Planned circulation: 50,000 print copies Asia-wide.

Digital: Worldwide

At Conventus Law, we believe in delivering knowledge differently, we believe in being well informed. 

Our products are highly informative, simple to access and easy to digest. Our services also happen to save clients time and costs.

As an online legal platform, we work with the very best law firms to produce timely legal analysis for businesses investing in Asia and beyond. 

Corporate Citizenship Briefing (CCBriefing) is managed by Corporate Citizenship, a global business consultancy specialising in sustainability and corporate responsibility. CCBriefing is one of the world’s longest-running regular publications on responsible and sustainable business issues, having provided news and analysis on responsible and sustainable business since 1991. CCBriefing offers a window on the world of corporate responsibility and sustainability to the many stakeholders in governments, NGOs, think-tanks and academia who work with business on solutions to the big issues of the day. Monthly guest articles and blogs are also published by CCBriefing.

fDi Intelligence is the largest FDI centre of excellence globally. Specialising in all areas relating to foreign direct investment and investment promotion, the full suite of services includes: location advertising to generate brand awareness; industry-leading intelligence tools to develop FDI strategies and identify potential investors; and tailored FDI events and investor roundtables to meet target companies and generate business leads. Products within the portfolio include fDi Markets, a database tracking crossborder greenfield investment on a real-time basis; fDi Benchmark, a database which benchmarks global locations on their attractiveness to foreign investors; and fDi Magazine.

Exclusive PR Partner (1)

Bell Pottinger provides best-in-class public relations services to leading regional and multinational companies. We support clients across Asia through our regional headquarters in Singapore and our network of offices, which includes Malaysia, Hong Kong and Myanmar. Our team offers expert counsel across the spectrum of corporate and financial communications, public affairs and crisis management. We work in every industrial and commercial sector, from large-scale infrastructure projects to financial services and technology companies. We advise our clients on various opportunities and challenges, from IPO, M&A and corporate launches, to government relations and reputational issues. Our integrated approach is underpinned by a strong digital expertise and focused on delivering measurable business results.

Contact Us

Sponsorship Opportunities
Philip Church
Head of Sales - Asia & Africa
Sponsorship Opportunities
Gaurav Nayak
Commercial Manager, Asia Pacific
Delegate Booking And Registration Enquiries
Pamela Lam
Conference Executive
Speaking Opportunities
Miriam Figueiredo
Regional Content Manager, Asia Pacific
Media Partner And Press Enquiries
Vian Fu
Marketing and Campaign Executive