WIEF Roundtable, Revitalisation and Reform: Catalysing Growth

15-16 December 2021

1.30 PM - 4.30 PM (UTC +8 HOURS)

Online

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The COVID-19 pandemic has led to a dramatic loss of life and devastating economic and social disruption of global proportion. To avoid similar shocks in the future, recovery policies by governments must include innovative strategies to create more resilient, inclusive and sustainable economies.  The business community has an equally important complementary role in overcoming the crisis. Apart from leveraging on digital transformation to hasten the recovery process, strategic collaboration that prioritises positive impact over competitive business considerations can better serve the welfare and interest of the global community.

This WIEF Roundtable organised against the backdrop of a challenging time, brings together governments, multilateral organisations, private sector as well as prominent individuals to address relevant issues pertaining to sustainable recovery from the pandemic.

DAY 1
15 December 2021 (Wednesday)
1.30 pm Virtual Login
2.00 pm –
2.30 pm
Special Address by Tan Sri Dr. Syed Hamid Albar, Chairman, WIEF Foundation, Malaysia
2.30 pm –
3.30 pm
SESSION 1

Navigating the New Business Reality

Businesses around the world are trying to navigate unchartered waters. With a high level of uncertainty and conditions changing every day, making decisions are becoming more challenging.  Some industry sectors, like tourism and aviation, may be feeling the impact of COVID-19 more than others.

This Session will discuss:

  • priorities and strategies as well as other operational policies adopted by businesses not only to survive but also to grow in these challenging times

Speakers:

  • Tan Sri Tony Fernandes, Chief Executive Officer AirAsia Group, Malaysia
  • Abrar A. Anwar, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Standard Chartered, Malaysia
  • Vibha Coburn, Group Chief Executive Officer, Manulife Holdings Bhd, Malaysia

Moderator:

3.30 pm –
3.45 pm
Special Address by H.E. Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, Chairman, Economic Recovery Council of Malaysia and former Prime Minister of Malaysia
3.45 pm –
4.45 pm
SESSION 2

Beyond Pandemic: Pursuit of Economic Revival

According to the World Bank, 90 per cent of the world’s economies contracted in 2020. This downturn severely impacted businesses around the globe with countless people suffering illnesses, losing jobs and their livelihood.

This Session will discuss:

  • short and long-term plans by governments to help their respective countries survive COVID-19 pandemic
  • opportunities provided by the crisis for nations to emerge stronger

Speakers:

Moderator:

4.45 pm END OF DAY 1
DAY 2
16 December 2021 (Thursday)
1.30 pm Virtual Login
2.00 pm –
2.15 pm
Special Address by H.E. Shamma bint Suhail Faris Al Mazrui, Minister of State for Youth Affairs, United Arab Emirates
2.15 pm –
3.15 pm
SESSION 3

Collaborate. Innovate. Accelerate

COVID-19 and its accompanying economic downturn posed various challenges for young entrepreneurs.  International surveys suggest that nearly 90 per cent of young entrepreneurs report a negative impact on their businesses.

This Session will discuss:

  • collaborative measures and support necessary to help scale-up young entrepreneurs
  • new innovations and leveraging market opportunities
  • changing business models and use of technology to accelerate growth

Speakers:

Moderator:

  • Desi Anwar, Director, Senior Anchor and Journalist, CNN Indonesia
3.15 pm –
3.30 pm
Special Address by H.E. Mustafa Varank, Minister of Industry and Technology, Turkey
3.30 pm –
4.30 pm
SESSION 4

Urban Farming and Agritech: Feeding the Nation

Global urban farming market is expected to reach USD 236.4 billion by 2023. The COVID-19 pandemic has however, highlighted the urgency for nations to ensure their food security. Expanding urban farms and the adoption of agritech whilst complementing the output of traditional farms, will help accelerate this objective.

This Session will explore:

  • role of urban farms and use of agritech in creating an urban farming ecosystem
  • challenges in high-tech urban farming, especially in sourcing and identifying appropriate applications, sensors, and technologies
  • how to attract industry players and stakeholders to explore urban farming as an investment

Speakers:

  • Matt van Leeuwen, Chief Innovation Officer, Sunway Group, Malaysia
  • Mark Horler, Chief Executive Officer and Founder, Urban AgriTech, United Kingdom
  • Eri Hayashi, Vice President, Japan Plant Factory Association, Japan

Moderator:

4.30 pm END OF WIEF ROUNDTABLE

 

DISCLAIMER / NOTES:

  • The Organisers reserve the right to alter the content and timing of the programme without prior notice, in the best interest of the event and are not responsible for cancellations due to unforeseen circumstances.
  • Programme as of 7 December 2021

 


Tan Sri Dr Syed Hamid Albar
Chairman
World Islamic Economic Forum Foundation 

Tan Sri Dr. Syed Hamid began his career in the Judicial and Legal Service as a magistrate in 1970 and was appointed President of the Sessions Court in 1971. He then pursued a career in the financial and banking sector locally and internationally from 1972 to 1986. In the years 1986 to 1990, he became a partner in the law firm of Albar, Zulkifly and Yap. He was a Member of Parliament from 1990 to 2013, during which time he held various ministerial positions including Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department and Minister of Justice, Minister of Defence, Minister of Home Affairs and most notably, Minister of Foreign Affairs. Tan Sri Dr. Syed Hamid’s last held position was Chairman of the Land Public Transport Commission of Malaysia (SPAD), from 2010 to 2017. Tan Sri Dr. Syed Hamid holds a Barrister-at-Law degree from the Middle Temple, U.K. and was called to the Malaysian Bar in 1974. He also holds a Masters Degree in Human Sciences (Political Science) from International Islamic University Malaysia and a PhD in International Relations from Asia e University, Kuala Lumpur.  

 

Tan Sri Tony Fernandes
CEO
AirAsia Group, Malaysia

Tan Sri Tony Fernandes is the Chief Executive Officer of AirAsia Group.

Together with Datuk Kamarudin Meranun, they co-founded low-cost carrier AirAsia by buying over an ailing airline and turning it around within two years.  The company has grown from a Malaysian domestic carrier into Asia’s largest low-cost carrier.

An accountant by training, Fernandes began his career in Richard Branson’s Virgin Group.  He returned to Malaysia as Warner Music Group’s Vice President for Southeast Asia before venturing into the airline business.

Fernandes has received numerous honours and awards including the Honour of the Commander of the Order of the British Empire, conferred by H.M. Queen Elizabeth II in 2011, and the Commander of the Legion d’Honneur, awarded by the French Government.

Fernandes studied in the UK, and qualified as an Associate Member of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants in 1991 and Fellow Member in 1996.

 

Abrar A. Anwar
Managing Director and CEO
Standard Chartered Malaysia

Abrar A. Anwar is the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Standard Chartered Malaysia since November 2017.

With close to 30 years of experience, his banking journey has brought him to countries such as India, the UK and Bangladesh, where he first joined the Bank in 2011 as Head of Corporate and Institutional Clients.

In 2015, he was appointed as Chief Executive Officer of Standard Chartered Bangladesh. Under his leadership, he positioned the organisation as the most respected and profitable Bank in the country.

Prior to joining Standard Chartered Bangladesh, he was the Managing Director and Head of Global Corporate and Commercial Banking at Citibank NA in Bangladesh as well as Head of Specialist Finance and Advisory Services at ANZ Grindlays Bank..

Abrar is also the Chairman of the British Malaysian Chamber of Commerce since 25 August 2020.

He holds a Master of Business Administratiion from the Institute of Business Administration (IBA), Bangladesh.

 


Vibha Coburn

Group CEO
Manulife Holdings Berhad
Malaysia 

Vibha Coburn is the Group CEO of Manulife Holdings Berhad. She was Chief Distribution Officer at Manulife Asia, responsible for developing and executing strategy for Manulife distribution across Asia, including championing the development and adoption of digital tools throughout all channels in distribution. Under her leadership, Manulife’s agency force became the world’s third best among international insurers in terms of Million Dollar Round Table membership. She helped strengthen Manulife’s bancassurance capabilities and established partnerships in Vietnam, Indonesia and Myanmar. 

Vibha had a wide range of senior roles over 30 years in banking, insurance and management consulting across Asia, Europe and Australia. She sits on the boards of Manulife Insurance Berhad and Manulife Investment Management (M) Berhad. 

Vibha holds an MBA from University of Western Australia, post graduate diploma from Securities Institute of Australia and a Bachelor of Commerce from Delhi University. 

 


Nadiah Hanim Abdul Latif

Co-Founder
OpiS International
Malaysia

Nadiah Hanim is a Strategic Advocacy and Corporate Affairs professional committed to developing effective collaborations for scaling impact. With over 20 years of experience ranging from corporate to NGO and humanitarian work, she is passionate about issues relating to sustainability, business, human rights, social impact, enterprise, youth empowerment, child rights protection and development, disability advocacy and access to resources. A speaker, trainer, moderator, facilitator and youth mentor, Nadiah has had the opportunity to engage stakeholders from grassroots advocacy and to participate in discussions on legislation and national action plans, both in Malaysia and abroad. At present, she is the Head Strategy and Programmes at the Yayasan Anak Bangsa Bisa and a Programme Host with BERNAMA TV. Nadiah is also the Co-Founder of OpiS International, a social enterprise that is committed to championing better work-life balance in Malaysia.

 


Dr Mansur Muhtar
Vice President Country Programs
Islamic Development Bank
Saudi Arabia 

Dr Mansur Muhtar is the Vice President Country Programmes at Islamic Development Bank and has served as Ag. Group Chief Economist, and Ag. Chief Product and Partnerships Officer.  

Prior to this, he was Executive Director of World Bank Group and co-chair of UN Inter-Governmental Committee of Experts on Sustainable Development Finance.  He was Minister of Finance, Budget and Economic Development, and Chairman of National Economic Management team of Nigeria.  He received Nigeria’s National Award – Officer of the Federal Republic for his contribution to national development.  

Dr Mansur was Executive Director in African Development Bank, Director-General of Nigeria’s Debt Management Office and Deputy General Manager at United Bank for Africa Plc.  He was Senior Lecturer and Head, Economics Department at Bayero University and a distinguished fellow at Center for the Study of Economies of Africa in Abuja. 

Dr Muhtar holds a PhD in economics from University of Sussex, UK and a master’s degree from University of Cambridge



Emilio ‘Jun’ Neri
Lead Economist
Bank of the Philippine Islands
Philippines 

Emilio ‘Jun’ Neri is the Lead Economist at Bank of the Philippine Islands. He served as economics and banking sector analyst for a former Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas – Monetary Board Member. He was a consultant at the Asian Development Bank, a senior economics researcher as well as lecturer on monetary and fiscal policy at the University of Asia and the Pacific. 

The research team led by Jun Neri consistently ranks at the top of survey for analysts conducted by Bloomberg, Asiamoney and The Asset. In 2019, he was awarded the Best Equities Economist, and number 2 Best Fixed Income Economist by the Fund Managers Association of the Philippines. Recently, he was ranked the Best Local Currency Bond Individual for Research in the Asset Benchmark Research Awards 2021. 

Jun Neri was also ranked number one among local economists by the Department of Finance as having the most accurate GDP growth projections from 2016 to 2018. He was President of the Philippine Economic Society in 2020

 


Dato’ Seri Johan Raslan
Board Member of Sime Darby Property Berhad, Institute of Corporate Directors Malaysia & Securities Commission’s Audit Oversight Board
Malaysia 

Dato’ Seri Johan Raslan  is an Independent Non-Executive Director and Audit Committee Chairman of Sime Darby Property Berhad. He has served as a director of two other Malaysian public-listed companies and a number of other entities.  

Dato’ Seri Johan is also a board member of the Institute of Corporate Directors Malaysia and the Securities Commission’s Audit Oversight Board . He is also a member of the Steering Committee of the CEO Action Network  and a Council Member of Climate Governance Malaysia.  

Prior to this, Dato’ Seri Johan was the Executive Chairman of PwC Malaysia. He worked in auditing as well as advisory for 10 years in London and for 20 years in Kuala Lumpur.  He is a mentor for the Malaysian chapter of the 30% Club, a global business-led campaign to increase the proportion of female directors of public-listed companies. He is an Eisenhower Fellow, a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England as well as Wales and former Adjunct Professor of Universiti Malaya.

 


Nordin Abdullah
Managing Director
Glenreagh Sdn Bhd
Malaysia 

Nordin Abdullah is the Managing Director of Glenreagh Sdn Bhd.  He sits on the board of the Malaysia Australia Business Council, was the Vice Chairman of the Malaysia International Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the World Halal Forum.  Nordin was an advisor for various multinational companies and international governments on business in Malaysia.  He was involved in policy and strategic planning on selected projects in Malaysia including the developing parts of the 3rd Industrial Master Plan and various strategic plans for state governments. 

Nordin developed several publications, television and radio shows, online media brands as well as documentaries. A Working Lunch with Nordin is a popular weekly show on LinkedIn and various social media platforms and websites. He established the Crisis Management Centre to assist individuals, corporations and governments to effectively deal with all aspects of crisis. 



Ritesh Agarwal

Founder and CEO
OYO Hotels & Homes
India

Ritesh Agarwal is an entrepreneur, Founder and CEO of OYO Hotels & Homes. He believes that everyone deserves hygienic and comfortable accommodation, irrespective of their budget. He founded OYO in India in 2013 to achieve this aim.

Today, OYO is a global platform that empowers entrepreneurs as well as small businesses with hotels and homes. It provides full-stack technology that increases earnings, eases operations; bringing easy to book, affordable as well as trusted accommodation to guests around the world, including India, US, UK, Europe, Southeast Asia and the Middle East.

OYO is backed by leading investors, including SoftBank Vision Fund, Sequoia Capital, Lightspeed Ventures, Hero Enterprise and China Lodging Group, among others. Ritesh was the first Asian resident to be accepted to the Thiel Fellowship.

 


Leontinus Alpha Edison
Co-founder & Vice Chairman
Tokopedia, Indonesia

 Leontinus Alpha Edison is the Co-founder and Vice Chairman of Tokopedia. Prior to Tokopedia, he has various experiences in software development in different kind of industries, including ISP, Insurance, Airlines, and several government projects. Today, he is the Vice Chairman in Tokopedia, focusing on mentoring and nurturing the next generation of leaders in Tokopedia. He is also responsible for technical, operation, people management, security, risk management, compliance, and governance.



Marcus Swanepoel
Co-founder and CEO
Luno, United Kingdom

Marcus Swanepoel is Co-founder and CEO of Luno, a leading global cryptocurrency company, with over eight million customers in 43 countries and a team of over 600. Luno operates across Africa, Australia, Europe, Southeast Asia, United Kingdom and the United States. He previously worked in private equity, consumer and investment banking in Europe, Southeast Asia and Africa, for companies like Standard Chartered, Morgan Stanley and 3i. He holds an MBA from INSEAD, is a qualified Chartered Accountant and a CFA charter holder.

 


Desi Anwar
Director, Senior Anchor and Journalist
CNN Indonesia
Indonesia

Desi Anwar is Director, Senior Anchor and Journalist at CNN Indonesia based in Jakarta, Indonesia. She hosts a daily talkshow Insight with Desi Anwar featuring in-depth interviews with prominent figures, policy makers, experts, celebrities and leaders both international as well as Indonesian.

Desi was Senior Anchor/Journalist at Metro TV news channel where she hosted Face 2 Face with Desi Anwar, a programme where she interviewed public figures and personalities around the world. Her guests included: HH the Dalai Lama, entrepreneur Richard Branson, Hollywood star Richard Gere, musician Kitaro, financier George Soros, former IMF Chief Christine Lagarde, author Karen Armstrong and many heads of states as well as other influential international figures.

Desi began her career as a pioneer anchor and reporter with Indonesia’s first commercial television station RCTI in 1990. Among other programs, she hosted daily news bulletins Seputar Indonesia, Nuansa Pagi, Buletin Siang and Buletin Malam. Desi also served as Executive Producer and Anchor of RCTI’s daily English-language news programme Indonesia Today and the weekly current affairs documentary Liputan Khusus.

Desi is also a columnist and a published writer. Her books include A Simple Life, Being Indonesian, Faces and Places, Growing Pains, Offline: Finding Yourself in the Age of Distractions and The Art of Solitude. She is an Honorary Fellow at SOAS, University of London.

 


H.E. Mustafa Varank
Minister
Industry and Technology
Turkey

H.E. Mustafa Varank was born in 1976 in Trabzon. He completed Istanbul Imam Hatip High School. He received his undergraduate degree from the Department of Political Science and Public Administration, Middle East Technical University. He holds a master’s degree in the Department of Computer Science at Indiana University in the USA.

He also worked as a specialist at Florida State University and as a researcher and system administrator at the Pervasive Technology Institute of Indiana University.

In 2005, he started working at the Prime Ministry. He was appointed as Senior Advisor to the Prime Minister in 2011 and as Senior Advisor to the President in 2014. In 2016, he received the title of Ambassador.

During his tenure as Senior Advisor, Varank, alongside the duties given him by the Prime Minister and the President, also took special interest in high technology, computer technology and applications, defense industry, and research and development activities.

 


Matt van Leeuwen
Chief Innovation Officer, Sunway Group and
Director, Sunway iLabs
Malaysia

Matt van Leeuwen is Chief Innovation Officer of Sunway Group and Director of Sunway iLabs – a smart partnership between Sunway University, Sunway Group and Sunway Ventures to foster entrepreneurship, stimulate market-driven innovations and accelerate scale up.  He is a council member of Malaysian Business Angel Network (MBAN), the trade association and governing body for angel investors in Malaysia.

Matt was a commercialisation specialist in PlaTCOM Ventures and gained entrepreneurial experience through three startups he co-founded.  He was a consultant at Cambridge-MIT Institute and Library House in Cambridge, and an analyst at Imperial Innovations in London.  He was a research scientist at Medical Research Council Epidemiology Unit, University of Cambridge and an exco member of Cambridge University Entrepreneurs Society.

Matt holds a bachelor’s degree in biomedical sciences and a masters in science and business from University of Utrecht, Netherlands.

 


Mark Horler

Founder & Chairman
UK Urban AgriTech (UKUAT)
United Kingdom

Mark Horler has been involved in the vertical farming industry for around eight years. He is the Founder and Chairman of UK Urban AgriTech (UKUAT) collective, bringing together leading companies, universities and individuals in the urban agritech industry of the United Kingdom.  He is also Communications Manager at the FarmTech Society, Co-Founder of the Soya Project and does freelance consulting work.

Mark has dealt extensively with industry standardisation, sustainability certification, vertical farming education and vertical farming policy.  His expertise is in building networks and associations that maximise value for their members and for the industry as a whole.

Mark’s primary interest is in taking a systemic overview of how vertical farming can be integrated with other systems to deliver on its promise of regenerative food production and resilient societies.

 


Eri Hayashi

Vice President
JAPAN PLANT FACTORY ASSOCIATION (JPFA)
Japan

Eri Hayashi is the Vice President of Japan Plant Factory Association (JPFA), a non-profit organisation devoted to academic and business advancements in plant factory/controlled environment agriculture (CEA).  Before joining JPFA, Eri worked at a private research institute in Tokyo specialising in technology advancement for global food production.

Eri has been conducting international field researches on plant factories/CEA since 2008.  She has published multiple research papers and has been a research project manager on artificial intelligence and phenotyping-based next-generation plant factory systems for environmental control and breeding.

She is also the Chief Executive Officer of E*Green Lab Inc.  She has a keen interest in technological advances, including phenotyping, in plant factories.

 


Patchari Raksawong
News Presenter
Thailand

Patchari Raksawong is a news presenter focusing on ASEAN-related content and stories. She has interviewed ASEAN leaders and covered many historic elections including those in Myanmar and the Philippines.

Patchari is one of Thailand’s leading masters of ceremonies having hosted many high profile regional and international events. She is also a lecturer in communications and public speaking with over 25 years of experience teaching at tertiary level.  She hails from Thailand but is currently based in Doha, Qatar, from where she continues to host her radio and television programmes.

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Tan Sri Dr Syed Hamid Albar
Chairman
World Islamic Economic Forum Foundation 

Tan Sri Dr. Syed Hamid began his career in the Judicial and Legal Service as a magistrate in 1970 and was appointed President of the Sessions Court in 1971. He then pursued a career in the financial and banking sector locally and internationally from 1972 to 1986. In the years 1986 to 1990, he became a partner in the law firm of Albar, Zulkifly and Yap. He was a Member of Parliament from 1990 to 2013, during which time he held various ministerial positions including Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department and Minister of Justice, Minister of Defence, Minister of Home Affairs and most notably, Minister of Foreign Affairs. Tan Sri Dr. Syed Hamid’s last held position was Chairman of the Land Public Transport Commission of Malaysia (SPAD), from 2010 to 2017. Tan Sri Dr. Syed Hamid holds a Barrister-at-Law degree from the Middle Temple, U.K. and was called to the Malaysian Bar in 1974. He also holds a Masters Degree in Human Sciences (Political Science) from International Islamic University Malaysia and a PhD in International Relations from Asia e University, Kuala Lumpur.  


Tan Sri Tony Fernandes
CEO
AirAsia Group, Malaysia

Tan Sri Tony Fernandes is the Chief Executive Officer of AirAsia Group.

Together with Datuk Kamarudin Meranun, they co-founded low-cost carrier AirAsia by buying over an ailing airline and turning it around within two years.  The company has grown from a Malaysian domestic carrier into Asia’s largest low-cost carrier.

An accountant by training, Fernandes began his career in Richard Branson’s Virgin Group.  He returned to Malaysia as Warner Music Group’s Vice President for Southeast Asia before venturing into the airline business.

Fernandes has received numerous honours and awards including the Honour of the Commander of the Order of the British Empire, conferred by H.M. Queen Elizabeth II in 2011, and the Commander of the Legion d’Honneur, awarded by the French Government.

Fernandes studied in the UK, and qualified as an Associate Member of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants in 1991 and Fellow Member in 1996.


Abrar A. Anwar
Managing Director and CEO
Standard Chartered Malaysia

Abrar A. Anwar is the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Standard Chartered Malaysia since November 2017.

With close to 30 years of experience, his banking journey has brought him to countries such as India, the UK and Bangladesh, where he first joined the Bank in 2011 as Head of Corporate and Institutional Clients.

In 2015, he was appointed as Chief Executive Officer of Standard Chartered Bangladesh. Under his leadership, he positioned the organisation as the most respected and profitable Bank in the country.

Prior to joining Standard Chartered Bangladesh, he was the Managing Director and Head of Global Corporate and Commercial Banking at Citibank NA in Bangladesh as well as Head of Specialist Finance and Advisory Services at ANZ Grindlays Bank..

Abrar is also the Chairman of the British Malaysian Chamber of Commerce since 25 August 2020.

He holds a Master of Business Administratiion from the Institute of Business Administration (IBA), Bangladesh.


Vibha Coburn

Group CEO
Manulife Holdings Berhad
Malaysia 

Vibha Coburn is the Group CEO of Manulife Holdings Berhad. She was Chief Distribution Officer at Manulife Asia, responsible for developing and executing strategy for Manulife distribution across Asia, including championing the development and adoption of digital tools throughout all channels in distribution. Under her leadership, Manulife’s agency force became the world’s third best among international insurers in terms of Million Dollar Round Table membership. She helped strengthen Manulife’s bancassurance capabilities and established partnerships in Vietnam, Indonesia and Myanmar. 

Vibha had a wide range of senior roles over 30 years in banking, insurance and management consulting across Asia, Europe and Australia. She sits on the boards of Manulife Insurance Berhad and Manulife Investment Management (M) Berhad. 

Vibha holds an MBA from University of Western Australia, post graduate diploma from Securities Institute of Australia and a Bachelor of Commerce from Delhi University. 


Nadiah Hanim Abdul Latif

Co-Founder
OpiS International
Malaysia

Nadiah Hanim is a Strategic Advocacy and Corporate Affairs professional committed to developing effective collaborations for scaling impact. With over 20 years of experience ranging from corporate to NGO and humanitarian work, she is passionate about issues relating to sustainability, business, human rights, social impact, enterprise, youth empowerment, child rights protection and development, disability advocacy and access to resources. A speaker, trainer, moderator, facilitator and youth mentor, Nadiah has had the opportunity to engage stakeholders from grassroots advocacy and to participate in discussions on legislation and national action plans, both in Malaysia and abroad. At present, she is the Head Strategy and Programmes at the Yayasan Anak Bangsa Bisa and a Programme Host with BERNAMA TV. Nadiah is also the Co-Founder of OpiS International, a social enterprise that is committed to championing better work-life balance in Malaysia.


H.E. Mustafa Varank
Minister
Industry and Technology
Turkey

H.E. Mustafa Varank was born in 1976 in Trabzon. He completed Istanbul Imam Hatip High School. He received his undergraduate degree from the Department of Political Science and Public Administration, Middle East Technical University. He holds a master’s degree in the Department of Computer Science at Indiana University in the USA.

He also worked as a specialist at Florida State University and as a researcher and system administrator at the Pervasive Technology Institute of Indiana University.

In 2005, he started working at the Prime Ministry. He was appointed as Senior Advisor to the Prime Minister in 2011 and as Senior Advisor to the President in 2014. In 2016, he received the title of Ambassador.

During his tenure as Senior Advisor, Varank, alongside the duties given him by the Prime Minister and the President, also took special interest in high technology, computer technology and applications, defense industry, and research and development activities.


Dr Mansur Muhtar
Vice President Country Programs
Islamic Development Bank
Saudi Arabia 

Dr Mansur Muhtar is the Vice President Country Programmes at Islamic Development Bank and has served as Ag. Group Chief Economist, and Ag. Chief Product and Partnerships Officer.  

Prior to this, he was Executive Director of World Bank Group and co-chair of UN Inter-Governmental Committee of Experts on Sustainable Development Finance.  He was Minister of Finance, Budget and Economic Development, and Chairman of National Economic Management team of Nigeria.  He received Nigeria’s National Award – Officer of the Federal Republic for his contribution to national development.  

Dr Mansur was Executive Director in African Development Bank, Director-General of Nigeria’s Debt Management Office and Deputy General Manager at United Bank for Africa Plc.  He was Senior Lecturer and Head, Economics Department at Bayero University and a distinguished fellow at Center for the Study of Economies of Africa in Abuja. 

Dr Muhtar holds a PhD in economics from University of Sussex, UK and a master’s degree from University of Cambridge


Emilio ‘Jun’ Neri
Lead Economist
Bank of the Philippine Islands
Philippines 

Emilio ‘Jun’ Neri is the Lead Economist at Bank of the Philippine Islands. He served as economics and banking sector analyst for a former Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas – Monetary Board Member. He was a consultant at the Asian Development Bank, a senior economics researcher as well as lecturer on monetary and fiscal policy at the University of Asia and the Pacific. 

The research team led by Jun Neri consistently ranks at the top of survey for analysts conducted by Bloomberg, Asiamoney and The Asset. In 2019, he was awarded the Best Equities Economist, and number 2 Best Fixed Income Economist by the Fund Managers Association of the Philippines. Recently, he was ranked the Best Local Currency Bond Individual for Research in the Asset Benchmark Research Awards 2021. 

Jun Neri was also ranked number one among local economists by the Department of Finance as having the most accurate GDP growth projections from 2016 to 2018. He was President of the Philippine Economic Society in 2020


Dato’ Seri Johan Raslan
Board Member of Sime Darby Property Berhad, Institute of Corporate Directors Malaysia & Securities Commission’s Audit Oversight Board
Malaysia 

Dato’ Seri Johan Raslan  is an Independent Non-Executive Director and Audit Committee Chairman of Sime Darby Property Berhad. He has served as a director of two other Malaysian public-listed companies and a number of other entities.  

Dato’ Seri Johan is also a board member of the Institute of Corporate Directors Malaysia and the Securities Commission’s Audit Oversight Board . He is also a member of the Steering Committee of the CEO Action Network  and a Council Member of Climate Governance Malaysia.  

Prior to this, Dato’ Seri Johan was the Executive Chairman of PwC Malaysia. He worked in auditing as well as advisory for 10 years in London and for 20 years in Kuala Lumpur.  He is a mentor for the Malaysian chapter of the 30% Club, a global business-led campaign to increase the proportion of female directors of public-listed companies. He is an Eisenhower Fellow, a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England as well as Wales and former Adjunct Professor of Universiti Malaya.


Nordin Abdullah
Managing Director
Glenreagh Sdn Bhd
Malaysia 

Nordin Abdullah is the Managing Director of Glenreagh Sdn Bhd.  He sits on the board of the Malaysia Australia Business Council, was the Vice Chairman of the Malaysia International Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the World Halal Forum.  Nordin was an advisor for various multinational companies and international governments on business in Malaysia.  He was involved in policy and strategic planning on selected projects in Malaysia including the developing parts of the 3rd Industrial Master Plan and various strategic plans for state governments. 

Nordin developed several publications, television and radio shows, online media brands as well as documentaries. A Working Lunch with Nordin is a popular weekly show on LinkedIn and various social media platforms and websites. He established the Crisis Management Centre to assist individuals, corporations and governments to effectively deal with all aspects of crisis. 


Ritesh Agarwal

Founder and CEO
OYO Hotels & Homes
India

Ritesh Agarwal is an entrepreneur, Founder and CEO of OYO Hotels & Homes. He believes that everyone deserves hygienic and comfortable accommodation, irrespective of their budget. He founded OYO in India in 2013 to achieve this aim.

Today, OYO is a global platform that empowers entrepreneurs as well as small businesses with hotels and homes. It provides full-stack technology that increases earnings, eases operations; bringing easy to book, affordable as well as trusted accommodation to guests around the world, including India, US, UK, Europe, Southeast Asia and the Middle East.

OYO is backed by leading investors, including SoftBank Vision Fund, Sequoia Capital, Lightspeed Ventures, Hero Enterprise and China Lodging Group, among others. Ritesh was the first Asian resident to be accepted to the Thiel Fellowship.


Leontinus Alpha Edison
Co-founder & Vice Chairman
Tokopedia, Indonesia

 Leontinus Alpha Edison is the Co-founder and Vice Chairman of Tokopedia. Prior to Tokopedia, he has various experiences in software development in different kind of industries, including ISP, Insurance, Airlines, and several government projects. Today, he is the Vice Chairman in Tokopedia, focusing on mentoring and nurturing the next generation of leaders in Tokopedia. He is also responsible for technical, operation, people management, security, risk management, compliance, and governance.


Marcus Swanepoel
Co-founder and CEO
Luno, United Kingdom

Marcus Swanepoel is Co-founder and CEO of Luno, a leading global cryptocurrency company, with over eight million customers in 43 countries and a team of over 600. Luno operates across Africa, Australia, Europe, Southeast Asia, United Kingdom and the United States. He previously worked in private equity, consumer and investment banking in Europe, Southeast Asia and Africa, for companies like Standard Chartered, Morgan Stanley and 3i. He holds an MBA from INSEAD, is a qualified Chartered Accountant and a CFA charter holder.


Desi Anwar
Director, Senior Anchor and Journalist
CNN Indonesia
Indonesia

Desi Anwar is Director, Senior Anchor and Journalist at CNN Indonesia based in Jakarta, Indonesia. She hosts a daily talkshow Insight with Desi Anwar featuring in-depth interviews with prominent figures, policy makers, experts, celebrities and leaders both international as well as Indonesian.

Desi was Senior Anchor/Journalist at Metro TV news channel where she hosted Face 2 Face with Desi Anwar, a programme where she interviewed public figures and personalities around the world. Her guests included: HH the Dalai Lama, entrepreneur Richard Branson, Hollywood star Richard Gere, musician Kitaro, financier George Soros, former IMF Chief Christine Lagarde, author Karen Armstrong and many heads of states as well as other influential international figures.

Desi began her career as a pioneer anchor and reporter with Indonesia’s first commercial television station RCTI in 1990. Among other programs, she hosted daily news bulletins Seputar Indonesia, Nuansa Pagi, Buletin Siang and Buletin Malam. Desi also served as Executive Producer and Anchor of RCTI’s daily English-language news programme Indonesia Today and the weekly current affairs documentary Liputan Khusus.

Desi is also a columnist and a published writer. Her books include A Simple Life, Being Indonesian, Faces and Places, Growing Pains, Offline: Finding Yourself in the Age of Distractions and The Art of Solitude. She is an Honorary Fellow at SOAS, University of London.


Matt van Leeuwen
Chief Innovation Officer, Sunway Group and
Director, Sunway iLabs
Malaysia

Matt van Leeuwen is Chief Innovation Officer of Sunway Group and Director of Sunway iLabs – a smart partnership between Sunway University, Sunway Group and Sunway Ventures to foster entrepreneurship, stimulate market-driven innovations and accelerate scale up.  He is a council member of Malaysian Business Angel Network (MBAN), the trade association and governing body for angel investors in Malaysia.

Matt was a commercialisation specialist in PlaTCOM Ventures and gained entrepreneurial experience through three startups he co-founded.  He was a consultant at Cambridge-MIT Institute and Library House in Cambridge, and an analyst at Imperial Innovations in London.  He was a research scientist at Medical Research Council Epidemiology Unit, University of Cambridge and an exco member of Cambridge University Entrepreneurs Society.

Matt holds a bachelor’s degree in biomedical sciences and a masters in science and business from University of Utrecht, Netherlands.


Mark Horler

Founder & Chairman
UK Urban AgriTech (UKUAT)
United Kingdom

Mark Horler has been involved in the vertical farming industry for around eight years. He is the Founder and Chairman of UK Urban AgriTech (UKUAT) collective, bringing together leading companies, universities and individuals in the urban agritech industry of the United Kingdom.  He is also Communications Manager at the FarmTech Society, Co-Founder of the Soya Project and does freelance consulting work.

Mark has dealt extensively with industry standardisation, sustainability certification, vertical farming education and vertical farming policy.  His expertise is in building networks and associations that maximise value for their members and for the industry as a whole.

Mark’s primary interest is in taking a systemic overview of how vertical farming can be integrated with other systems to deliver on its promise of regenerative food production and resilient societies.


Eri Hayashi

Vice President
JAPAN PLANT FACTORY ASSOCIATION (JPFA)
Japan

Eri Hayashi is the Vice President of Japan Plant Factory Association (JPFA), a non-profit organisation devoted to academic and business advancements in plant factory/controlled environment agriculture (CEA).  Before joining JPFA, Eri worked at a private research institute in Tokyo specialising in technology advancement for global food production.

Eri has been conducting international field researches on plant factories/CEA since 2008.  She has published multiple research papers and has been a research project manager on artificial intelligence and phenotyping-based next-generation plant factory systems for environmental control and breeding.

She is also the Chief Executive Officer of E*Green Lab Inc.  She has a keen interest in technological advances, including phenotyping, in plant factories.


Patchari Raksawong
News Presenter
Thailand

Patchari Raksawong is a news presenter focusing on ASEAN-related content and stories. She has interviewed ASEAN leaders and covered many historic elections including those in Myanmar and the Philippines.

Patchari is one of Thailand’s leading masters of ceremonies having hosted many high profile regional and international events. She is also a lecturer in communications and public speaking with over 25 years of experience teaching at tertiary level.  She hails from Thailand but is currently based in Doha, Qatar, from where she continues to host her radio and television programmes.