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29 August to 01 September 2022 | Open meeting

APTFF 2022 cover

Next Generation Trade Facilitation for Sustainable Development

The Asia-Pacific Trade Facilitation Forum (APTFF) is the leading regional platform for the exchange of good practices and knowledge on trade facilitation. The APTFF has been organized by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), in cooperation with a growing number of partners, since 2009. The Forum attracts over 250 participants from over 30 countries, and offers extensive opportunities for capacity building and cooperation.

The 10th Asia-Pacific Trade Facilitation Forum co-organized by ADB and ESCAP with the Ministry of Trade and Industry, Singapore will focus on how trade facilitation should evolve to enhance the resilience of international supply chains in times of pandemic and to better support sustainable economic recovery and development in the Asia-Pacific region. In this regard, the Forum will explore how trade digitalization and emerging technologies can be used to ensure that new generation trade facilitation measures are inclusive and sustainable, enabling effective participation of SMEs and less developed economies in international trade.

The Forum will feature panel discussions, interactive and informative sessions allowing the participants to share experiences and perspectives on different aspects of trade facilitation, including trade finance, cross-border e-commerce and paperless trade, transit, innovative application of emerging technologies, etc. The Forum will feature relevant regional initiatives and implementation cases in each session. The Forum will also include a number of side-events providing more in-depth exploration of pertinent trade facilitation issues.

(Physical meeting is by invitation only)

Online Participation 

The APTFF 2022 is open for online participation. To join our main event and side events virtually, please register at the following links:

Other links

Aug
29
2022
Meeting of the Focal Points of the Framework Agreement on Facilitation of Cross-border Paperless Trade in Asia and the Pacific

Singapore

Aug
30
2022
Expert review meeting on paperless trade development in a few countries

Singapore

Aug
30
2022
UNNExT Advisory Committee Meeting

Singapore

Aug
31
2022
APTFF 2022 Capacity Building Workshop on Cross-border Paperless Trade Facilitation [Part 1]

Singapore

Aug
31
2022
Workshop on International Standards for Trade Facilitation

Singapore

Aug
31
2022
Launch of the joint ITC-UNECE publication “Managing Risk for Safe and Efficient Trade: Guide for Border Regulators”

Singapore

Aug
31
2022
UNCTAD/ESCAP Workshop on NTFCs and Sustainable Trade Facilitation

Singapore

Aug
31
2022
Seventeenth session of the SPECA Working Group on Trade

Singapore

Sep
01
2022
APTFF 2022 Capacity Building Workshop on Cross-border Paperless Trade Facilitation [Part 2]

Singapore

Sep
01
2022
A Way Forward on Proof of Origin as Concrete Trade Facilitating Measure

Singapore

Sep
01
2022
Asia Pacific Trade Agreement (APTA) Promotion Session

Singapore

Sep
01
2022
UN Global Survey on Digital and Sustainable Trade Facilitation: Way Forward

Singapore

Sep
01
2022
Transit Facilitation for CAREC Economic Integration

Singapore

Sep
01
2022
Regional Organizations Cooperation Mechanism for Trade Facilitation (ROC-TF) Meeting

Singapore

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Ms. Low Yen Ling
Minister of State Ministry of Trade and Industry, Singapore
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Ms Low Yen Ling was elected as a Member of Parliament for Chua Chu Kang GRC in the 2011, 2015 and 2020 General Elections. She is presently the Minister of State for the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) and Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth (MCCY). Prior to that, she was the Senior Parliamentary Secretary for the Ministry of Education (MOE) from 2015 till July 2020 and the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) from 2018 till July 2020. She had also previously held office in the Ministry of Social and Family Development (2013-2015), MCCY (2014-2015) and MTI (2015- 2018). 

Ms Low began her career in the private sector with experience in financial institutions and a start-up venture. Thereafter, she joined the Singapore Economic Development Board and in her decade of service, played a key role in strengthening Singapore’s entrepreneurial landscape and professional services sector. In 2011, she became Chief Executive Officer of Business China, an organisation nurturing Chinese biculturalism, bilingualism and collaboration with China. With her strong bicultural and bilingual background, she spearheaded unique programmes to immerse business leaders in China and deepen young Singaporeans’ knowledge of modern China.

Drawing on her strong ties with the local business community, Ms Low is presently Advisor for the Singapore Business Federation’s (SBF) SME Committee (SMEC) and Singapore Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s (SCCCI) Trade Association Committee (TACOM). She also serves on the multi-agency national SG Clean taskforce to uphold high standards of public and personal hygiene beyond Covid-19. In addition, Ms Low is Chairperson of the Mayors’ Committee and Mayor of South West District.

With a heart for the underprivileged, Ms Low continues to serve as a board member of the Chinese Development Assistance Council (CDAC) where she steers its Student and Parent Education Committee to expand the organisation’s reach and support to low-income students and families. Under her leadership, CDAC and its partners have established more than 20 Big Heart Student Care centres island-wide to provide after-school care to students of all races. Ms Low also contributes in the area of education as a member of the PAP Community Foundation (PCF) Executive Committee.

In her past role as MOE’s Senior Parliamentary Secretary, Ms Low led the ministry’s efforts to strengthen students’ foundation in their learning of the Chinese language. In her capacity as Chairman of the Committee to Promote Chinese Language Learning (CPCLL), Vice-Chairperson of the Lee Kuan Yew Fund for Bilingualism, and Advisor to the Singapore Centre for Chinese Language (SCCL), Ms Low expanded the breadth and depth of public outreach programmes that attracted increased participation from pre-schoolers, youths and parents.

Ms Low also spearheaded the drive to improve communications and public awareness of SkillsFuture, the national lifelong learning movement. These efforts were synergistic with her responsibility as Senior Parliamentary Secretary of MTI where she aligned the government’s SkillsFuture thrust with several Industry Transformation Maps (ITM) to help businesses meet the challenges of a changing economy. At MOM, Ms Low advanced the interests and skills of workers, focusing on older Singaporeans, women and young graduates.

As a mother of two school-going children, Ms Low spends the free time she has mostly with her family.

armida
Ms. Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana
Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations and Executive Secretary of ESCAP
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Ms. Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana was appointed Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations and Executive Secretary of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) on 13 September 2018.

Prior to joining ESCAP, Ms. Alisjahbana was Professor of Economics at Universitas Padjadjaran in Bandung, Indonesia, a position she assumed in 2005. She joined Universitas Padjadjaran as a lecturer in 1988. Since 2016, she has served as Director for the Center for Sustainable Development Goals Studies at Universitas Padjadjaran and Vice Chair of the Indonesian Academy of Sciences.

She also serves on the Governing Board of the Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia (ERIA), and member of the Indonesian Academy of Sciences (Akademi Ilmu Pengetahuan Indonesia - AIPI), the Forum of Statistics Community (Forum Masyarakat Statistik or Advisory Council of the Indonesian Statistics), the International Advisory Board of the Bulletin of Indonesian Economic Studies and Council Member of the Regional Science Association International (RSAI).

From 2009 to 2014, she was Minister of National Development Planning and the Head of the National Development Planning Agency (BAPPENAS), Indonesia. She served as Co-chair of the Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation from 2012 to 2014. From 2009 to 2014, she was Alternate Governor of the World Bank and Alternate Governor of the Asian Development Bank representing the government of Indonesia. In 2016, she was a member of the High Level Independent Team of Advisors to support the ECOSOC Dialogue on the longer term positioning of the United Nations Development System in the context of the 2030 Agenda on Sustainable Development.

Ms. Alisjahbana has been involved in various research projects and consultancies to the United Nations University/Institute for Advanced Study in Tokyo, the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), Australia, the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID), the European Commission, and the International Labor Organization (ILO).

Ms. Alisjahbana earned her Bachelor degree in Economics and Development Studies from Universitas Indonesia, Indonesia, a Masters degree in Economics from Northwestern University, USA and a Ph.D in Economics from University of Washington, USA. She was awarded the Mahaputra Adipradana Order (Bintang Mahaputra Adipradana) from the Republic of Indonesia, honorary brevet from the Indonesian Navy and honorary flight wing from the Indonesian Air Force.

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Mr. Albert Park
Chief Economist and Director General, Economic Research and Regional Cooperation Department, ADB
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Mr. Park has more than 2 decades of experience as a development economist. A well-known expert on the economy of the People’s Republic of China, he has directed a number of large-scale research projects in the country. He has also served as an international consultant for the World Bank and a member of the steering committee for the Asia-Pacific Research Universities’ Population Aging Hub. Mr. Park has worked on a broad range of development issues including poverty and inequality, intergenerational mobility, microfinance, migration and labor markets, the future of work, and foreign investment.

Mr. Park is Chair Professor of Economics (on leave) at Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) and previously served as Director of the Center for Economic Policy at HKUST. He also served as a founding director of HKUST’s Institute for Emerging Market Studies, professor at the University of Oxford, and associate professor at the University of Michigan. He has held editorial positions at a number of leading economic journals.

A national of the United States, he received his bachelor’s degree in economics from Harvard University and his doctorate in applied economics from Stanford University.

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Ms. Rupa Chanda
Director, ESCAP
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Rupa Chanda is the Director of Trade, Investment and Innovation. Prior to that, she was a Professor of Economics at IIM Bangalore and the Dean of Programmes at the institute. She has worked as an Economist at the IMF and briefly served as Head, UNESCAP Subregional Office for South and South-West Asia in New Delhi. Prof. Chanda received her PhD in Economics from Columbia University and her Bachelor’s from Harvard University. She teaches Macroeconomics and International Trade and has received teaching awards. Her research interests include the WTO, trade in services, regional integration and migration. She has undertaken research and professional assignments for international and Indian organizations and has published extensively in the form of books, journal articles, book chapters, and reports. She is active professionally as a research guide, reviewer, and member of several expert committees. She was member of the WHO’s Review Committee on the functioning of the International Health Regulations (2015-16) and  the WHO’s Expert Advisory Group, International Recruitment of Health Personnel (2019-20).

 

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H.E. Mr. Abdurahmonzoda Abdurahmon Safarali
Deputy Minister of Economic Development and Trade of the Republic of Tajikistan
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2012-2013-

Specialist of the WTO Affairs Division of the Main Department on Trade Policy and Consumers Market of the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade of the Republic of Tajikistan, Dushanbe

 

2013-2015-

Leading Specialist of the WTO Affairs Department of the Main Department on Trade Policy and Consumers Market of the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade of the Republic of Tajikistan, Dushanbe

2015-2017-

Chief Specialist of the WTO Affairs Department of the Main Department on Trade Policy and Consumers Market of the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade of the Republic of Tajikistan, Dushanbe

2017 (03-12)-

Permanent Mission of the Republic of Tajikistan to the UN Office in Geneva and other International Organizations responsible for World Trade Organization (WTO) issues in Geneva, Switzerland

2017-2018-

Chief Specialist of the WTO Affairs Department of the Main Department on Trade Policy and Consumers Market of the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade of the Republic of Tajikistan, Dushanbe

2018-2020-

Head of the WTO Affairs Department of the Main Department on Trade Policy and Consumers Market of the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade of the Republic of Tajikistan, Dushanbe

Executive Secretary of the Coordination Committee on Trade Facilitation of the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade of the Republic of Tajikistan, Dushanbe

From March 2020 to present -

Deputy Minister of the Economic Development and Trade of the Republic of Tajikistan, Dushanbe

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H.E. Mr. Riyaz Mansoor
Deputy Minister, Ministry of Economic Development, Maldives
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Riyaz started his career at the Ministry of Economic Development and has over 20 years of experience in both the public and private sectors, in areas such as domestic and international trade regulatory matters, trade and investment, as well as trade policy.

During his time at Ministry, he served as both the Assistant Director & Director, in charge of trade regulatory sections. One of his most notable accomplishments include the first certification of 7 fishery export companies to ISO 22,000 certification in line with EU requirements.

After his initial service at the Civil Service, he worked as the Manager for Collections and Payouts at the Maldives Pension Administration Office, eventually moving onto doing private consultancies - both for the government as well as internationally, including for the Asian Development Bank.

In January 2019, he was appointed as the Deputy Minister for the Ministry of National Planning and Infrastructure, working on national planning aspects. His appointment was changed to Deputy Minister to the Ministry of Economic Development in June 2020. 

Riyaz is also the Chairperson of Minimum Wage Advisory Board, where his work has played a major role in establishing the first minimum wage in Maldives in January 2022. 

He also serves as a member of the Board of Directors at state-owned ‘Fahi Dhiriulhun Corporation’ since March 2019, which has a mandate of providing social housing to the citizens of Maldives. He also serves as the Chairperson of the Board of 'Ocean Connect Maldives' since March 2022, which has a mandate to install and manage subsea fiber suppling cheap high speed data to the Maldives.

Riyaz holds a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Software Engineering (Honors) from the University of Queensland, 2001.

 

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H.E. Mr. Ulziisaikhan Ganbold
Director-General, Department of Foreign Trade and Economic Development, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mongolia
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Mr Ulziisaikhan Ganbold is the Director of Economic Cooperation and Foreign Trade Department at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs since October 2021.

Technical and service officer at the Department of Public Administration, Ministry of Foreign Affairs 2010-2011

Attaché, Third Secretary, Department of Contracts and Legal Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs 2011-2016

Consultant, Economic Cooperation and Foreign Trade Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 2016-2017

Deputy Director, Economic Cooperation and Foreign Trade Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 2017-2021.

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Ms. Deborah Elms
Executive Director, Asian Trade Centre
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Ms. Deborah Elms is the Founder and Executive Director of the Asian Trade Centre. She is also Vice Chair of the Asia Business Trade Association. She sits on the International Technical Advisory Committee of the Global Trade Professionals Alliance and is Chair of the Working Group on Trade Policy and Law. She holds a senior fellow position in the Singapore Ministry of Trade and Industry’s Trade Academy. Lately, she was a member of the advisory board on the hackathon for model provisions for trade in times of crisis and pandemic in regional and other trade agreements organized by the UN and the WTO. 

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

She worked on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) and global value chains. She has provided consulting on a range of trade issues to governments including the United Arab Emirates, Sri Lanka, Cambodia, Taiwan Province of China, and Singapore. 

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

 

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Ms. Anabel González
Deputy Director-General, World Trade Organization
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Ms Anabel González (Costa Rica) is a renowned global expert on trade, investment and economic development with a proven managerial track record in international organizations and the public sector. In government, Ms Gonzalez served as Minister of Foreign Trade of Costa Rica; as Director- General for International Trade Negotiations; as Director-General of the Costa Rican Investment Promotion Agency (CINDE); and as Special Ambassador and Chief negotiator of the US-Central America-Dominican Republic Free Trade Agreement. Ms Gonzalez also served at the World Bank as a Senior Director, the WTO as Director of the Agriculture and Commodities Division and as Senior Consultant with the Inter-American Development Bank. More recently, Ms Gonzalez has worked as a Non- Resident Senior Fellow with the Peterson Institute for International Economics. Ms Gonzalez obtained her master's degree from Georgetown University Law Center with the highest academic distinction and has published extensively on economic issues and trade.

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Ms. Anna Joubin-Bret
Secretary, United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL)
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Ms. Anna Joubin-Bret is the Secretary of the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) and the Director of the International Trade Law Division in the United Nations Office of Legal Affairs, which functions as the substantive secretariat for UNCITRAL. She is the ninth Secretary the Commission since it was established by the General Assembly in 1966.

Prior to her appointment on 24 November 2017, Ms. Joubin-Bret practiced law in Paris, specializing in International Investment Law and Investment Dispute Resolution. She focused on serving as counsel, arbitrator, mediator and conciliator in international investment disputes. She served as arbitrator in several ICSID, UNCITRAL and ICC disputes. Prior to 2011 and for 15 years, Ms. Joubin-Bret was the Senior Legal Adviser for the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). She edited and authored seminal research and publications on international investment law, notably the Sequels to UNCTAD IIA Series and co-edited with Jean Kalicki a book on Reform of Investor-State Dispute Settlement in 2015.

Ms. Joubin-Bret holds a post-graduate degree (DEA) in Private International Law from the University of Paris I, Panthéon-Sorbonne, a Master’s Degree in International Economic Law from University Paris I and in Political Science from Institut d'Etudes Politiques. She was Legal Counsel in the legal department of the Schneider Group, General Counsel of the KIS Group and Director-Export of Pomagalski S.A. She was appointed judge at the Commercial Court in Grenoble (France) and was elected Regional Counsellor of the Rhône-Alpes Region in 1998.

 

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Mr. Antoine Cadoux
CEO, Singapore Trade Data Exchange
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Antoine Cadoux is the CEO of Singapore Trade Data Exchange Services (SGTraDex).

Antoine has over 15 years of experience in leadership roles and worked with companies across a range of industries – industrial products, transportation & logistics, automotive, retail, and mining – as well as geographies from North America, Europe, to Asia. He has deep expertise in strategy, operations and digital transformation working with companies to design and implement market-back strategies for competitive advantage.

He was previously a Director at Strategy&, a global consulting business unit of PricewaterhouseCoopers. Antoine also spent five years as Director of Operations at National Optronics, a leading manufacturer of lens processing equipment in the US.

A native of France, Antoine graduated from the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology with a Master of Science in industrial engineering and engineering management. He also holds a Master of Business Administration from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.

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Mr. Mohammad Saeed
Senior Trade Facilitation Adviser, International Trade Centre
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Dr. Mohammad Saeed is Chief of Trade Facilitation and Policy for the Business Section of the International Trade Centre (ITC) Geneva where he leads trade policy, trade facilitation and Quality for trade teams. He also served as Senior Technical Adviser on Trade and Transport Facilitation with UNCTAD. He has vast experience of working on trade facilitation issues at national, regional and multilateral level. He also worked as lead negotiator for Pakistan in WTO negotiations for the Trade Facilitation Agreement for six years. His work experience of over 15 years with Pakistan Customs has contributed towards his pragmatic approach based on the ground realities in the TF area. He has enriched his experience by working with many developing countries for identifying their TF needs assessment and developing their national implementation plans. International Trade law and Procedure is the area of his prime interest. He has the honour to be Chairman and Panelist six dispute settlement cases in the WTO, including chairing four. He

has also been Chairman of WTO Committee on Market Access for consecutive three years and Chairman of WTO Customs valuation Committee. He also served as Vice Chairman of General Assembly of Advisory Centre on WTO Laws (ACWL) for consecutive five years. He is visiting faculty to many institutes of academics and professional development including LLM programme of University of Barcelona. He is also UNNEXT expert on SME and Paperless Trade. He holds Masters in Public Administration from Harvard Kennedy School and LLB from the University of London. Besides having a postgraduate degree in Economics from the University of London, he has his specialized training in International Trade Law from Harvard Law School.

Mr. Yann Duval
Mr. Yann Duval
Chief, Trade Policy and Facilitation Section, Trade, Investment and Innovation Division, ESCAP
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Yann Duval is currently Chief of Trade Policy and Facilitation Section at UN-ESCAP, the regional branch of the United Nations Secretariat for Asia and the Pacific.

Over the past 20 years, Dr. Duval has conducted research and delivered technical assistance and advisory services on trade policy and facilitation throughout Asia and the Pacific, including on the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement. He spearheaded the development of the Asia-Pacific Research and Training Network on Trade (ARTNeT), as well as, interalia, the creation of the ESCAP-World Bank Trade Cost Database, the UN Global Survey on Trade Facilitation and Paperless Trade Implementation and the online Trade Intelligence and Negotiation Adviser (TINA).

Dr. Duval was also instrumental in the development of the United Nations Network of Experts for Paperless Trade and Transport in Asia and the Pacific (UNNExT) and the negotiation of a new intergovernmental Framework Agreement on Facilitation of Cross-Border Paperless Trade in Asia and the Pacific, a UN treaty entered into force in February 2021.

Prior to joining the UN, he held faculty positions at the Asian Institute of Technology and Washington State University, USA.

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Ms. Choo Wai Yee
Director (Networked Trade Platform Office), Singapore Customs
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Wai Yee joined the National Trade Platform (NTP) Office in 2017, and she oversees the development as well as operations of the NTP. Her responsibilities spans the spectrum of NTP’s business covering both domestic and cross-border transactions, and ranges from driving the commercial and engagement strategies and programmes, innovation and the introduction of new capability in trade digitalisation for both regulatory and non-regulatory transactions, to the day-to-day operations of the NTP. Wai Yee has experience starting new teams and structures, in data analytics, socio-economic policy and industry engagement in various roles in the Prime Minister’s Office, Ministry of Trade and Industry, and the Ministry of Manpower. Prior to joining the public sector, Wai Yee worked in shipping with a focus on emerging markets of South Asia, Africa, Central and South America trade.

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H.E. Mr. Domingos Lopes Antunes
Vice Minister for Commerce and Industry, Ministry of Tourism, Commerce and Industry, Timor-Leste
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Mr. Domingos Antunes started his career in the Ministry of Tourism, Commerce, and Industry (MTCI) of Timor-Leste in July 2017 as a Policy and Planning Adviser. He later served as a Trade and Industrial Policy Adviser up to June 2020. Upon this, Mr. Antunes has elaborated MTCI’s long-term strategic plan to diversify Timor-Leste’s trade, industrial, and tourism sector. This diversification aims to provide more sustainable job creations and a decent income, support the national private sector for exporting and promote the enabling trade and investment environment.

Mr. Antunes has led several roles and provided technical support while working with the MTCI, which required a successful trade and industrial policy action plan’s implementation. He coordinated technical support preparations for Timor-Leste accessions to the World Trade Organization (WTO), EU Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) and ASEAN Economic Community. Mr. Antunes supported the studies and development of the first Timor-Leste’s industrial park in Liquiça Municipality, developing and promoting value chain for import substitution and export, supporting the establishment of a loan guarantee scheme for M-SMEs with UNDP, and supporting current initiatives of the reform on commercial, industrial and tourism licenses. Furthermore, he has defined and as a co-author of the first-ever Timor-Leste industrial policy document and embedded the value chain tool. He is also currently drafting and supporting the development of Timor-Leste trade policy and trade strategy as the ADB co-financing partner under the Capacity for Regional Economic Integration Project.

Before his ministry role, Mr. Antunes served as a GIZ Senior Advisor in the Innovative Employment Promotion Project (IEP) in August 2015. The MTCI and MAF as the primary implementation partners, while the target groups were entrepreneurs, traders, and cooperatives. The IEP project focused on promoting value chains to identify and create income and employment opportunities. Mr. Antunes has significantly performed as a value chain specialist, and GIZ applied the value chain in cooperation with its political partners (MTCI) at national and local levels.

Currently, Mr. Antunes is also serving as a UN-ESCAP national consultant for cross-border paperless trade to assess the legal and technical preparedness of Timor-Leste with International Experts for cross-border paperless trade. Besides, Mr. Antunes is also serving INTEGRA - USAID Timor-Leste as a National Expert for Customs Reform Project with the Ministry of Finance of Timor-Leste as a political counterpart. Both projects address Timor-Leste’s trade facilitation needs, particularly in a rapid digitalizing global economy, improving current customs status and operating environment, legal and regulatory environment, and compliance with international practices. Before working with GIZ and the government (MTCI), Mr. Antunes worked as Project Manager and Senior Program Officer on the community development project for more than seven years with MercyCorps and ChildFund Timor-Leste.

Academically, Mr. Antunes holds a master’s degree with a specialization in International Business from the Nordland University of Norway and has bachelor’s in economics from the National University of Timor-Leste (UNTL). He has participated in several conferences related to trade, industry, tourism, trade facilitation, and energy in Norway and Timor-Leste and in many different countries during his academic years.

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Mr. Jonathan Soriano
Director, Philippine Bureau of Customs
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Mr. Jonathan T. Soriano is an IT practitioner for 27 years. He is currently the OIC-Director of the Technology Management Service (TMS) - Management Information Systems and Technology Group (MISTG) of the Bureau of Customs.

The BOC-MISTG handles the computerization program of the Bureau of Customs to ensure its proper implementation and continuous progress.

As the OIC-Director of the Technology Management Service (TMS), Mr. Soriano manages the BOC’s primary IT infrastructures such as networks, servers, database management, private and public cloud and cyber security and anti-malware.

In support to trade facilitation, Director Soriano plays vital roles as the Philippine National Project Manager and Head of Delegation to the ASEAN Single Window (ASW) related meetings, Primary Representative to the WCO Data Model and Cross-Border Paperless Trade discussions, and Vice-Chair  of the Philippine Trade Facilitation Committee (PTFC) – Compliance Monitoring Working Group.

 

 

 

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Ms. Silvia Sorescu
Policy Analyst, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)
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Silvia Sorescu is a Policy Analyst in the Emerging Policy Issues Division of the OECD’s Trade and Agriculture Directorate, which she joined in 2010. Silvia is currently the Project lead for the Directorate’s trade facilitation work, which includes the OECD Trade Facilitation Indicators covering over 160 economies. She is also working on developing the Directorate’s work stream linking digital trade and trade facilitation. In the context of the trade facilitation work, Silvia has been a core part of the team analysing vaccines and other medical goods supply chains.

Silvia has as well in-depth country-specific experience, working on agro-food trade and domestic policies issues in Bulgaria, China, Colombia, India, Indonesia, Portugal and Romania.

Prior to joining the OECD, she was a Research Associate at the World Economy Group, an academic research centre at the Paris Institute of Political Studies (Sciences Po Paris), working on various trade policy and European Union policy issues. Silvia holds a Master’s Degree in International Economics from Sciences Po Paris.

 

Mr. Ronald Butiong
Mr. Ronald Butiong
Chief of Regional Cooperation and Integration Thematic Group, Sustainable Development and Climate Change Department, ADB
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Mr. Butiong oversees and coordinates ADB’s overallregional cooperation and integration(RCI)operations by providing relevant strategic and technical advice. He develops and maintains thematic policies, strategies, operational plans, and directional papers to guide bankwide regional cooperation and integration work and ensures alignment with ADB’s Strategy 2030.

Mr. Butiong has over 25 years of professional experience working on regional cooperation and integration and country programming. He joined ADB in February 2004 as a Programs Specialist -GreaterMekong Subregion\(GMS) in the former Mekong Department. He progressed to Senior Regional Cooperation Specialist and GMS Unit Head, Southeast Asia Department (SERD) in June 2008, and in February 2010, transferred to the Central and West Asia Department (CWRD) to head the Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation (CAREC) Unit. He was promoted to IS6 in CWRD in December 2010, and in October 2012, he was transferred to South Asia Department (SARD) to head the South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation (SASEC) Unit. In April 2016, he was promoted to the position of Director of the Regional Cooperation and Operations Coordination Division (SARC), SARD.

Mr. Butiong was a consultant responsible for various technical assistance projects promoting subregional cooperation in ADB's developing member countries. He was Assistant Vice President and Head of Investments of the Trust Banking Group of the erstwhile Far East Bank and Trust Company (FEBTC) in the Philippines.

Mr. Butiong holds a Master's degree in Mathematics from Louisiana State University, United States, and graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor's degree in Applied Mathematics from De La Salle University, Philippines in 1985. He also holds a Certificate in FEBTC-Executive Development Program from the Asian Institute of Management, Philippines.

Mr. Young-hwan Cha
Mr. Young-hwan Cha
CEO, Korea Trade Network
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Mr. Young-hwan Cha is the CEO and president of Korea Trade Network (KTNET), which has been operating uTradeHub, the Korean e-trade infrastructure, since 1991. Before joining KTNET, he served as a government official, formulating and coordinating economic policies in the public sector. From 2017 to 2018, he worked as the Secretary for Economic Policy in the Office of President of the Republic of Korea, and then as the Vice Minister at the Office of Government Policy Coordination in the Prime Minister’s Office. He served as the Director General of the Policy Coordination Bureau and the Director of the Economic Policy Bureau of the Ministry of Economy and Finance. Furthermore, Mr. Cha gained experience in international finance when he worked as the Senior Economist at the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (World Bank Group) from 2012 to 2014. He graduated from Seoul National University with a degree in Economics and a master’s degree in Public Administration and received his Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Missouri, United States.

 
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Mr. Cuong Ba Tran
Assistant Director, ASEAN Secretariat
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Mr. Cuong Ba Tran is the Assistant Director, Head of Trade Facilitation Division, the ASEAN Secretariat. He joined the ASEAN Secretariat on 2 September 2018.

His main duties are to provide technical advice and policy recommendation pertaining to customs and trade facilitation, trade in goods, rules of origin, ASEAN Single Window (ASW), and ASEAN Customs Transit System (ACTS) issues. He also provides support for the implementation of those areas in the ASEAN Trade in Goods Agreement (ATIGA), the ATIGA Upgrade negotiations, and the ongoing ASEAN-Canada Free Trade Agreement (ACAFTA) negotiations.

In strengthening ASEAN’s capacity in those areas, he develops, implements,  and monitors trade-related projects and programmes that also support the establishment of a single market and production base, particularly in the liberalisation and facilitation of trade in goods.

Before being a staff member of the ASEAN Secretariat, he serviced the Ministry of Trade and Industry of Viet Nam in more than 14 years. He negotiated a number of FTAs, including the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) (now renamed as CP-TPP), Viet Nam – Israel, Viet Nam – EFTA, ASEAN-Japan, ASEAN-Korea, ASEAN- Australia – New Zealand, ASEAN – Korea, and ASEAN – China FTA. Under such negotiations, he covered a number of areas, such as trade in goods, trade in services, investment, rules of origin, and customs procedures and trade facilitation. He is also a WTO expert in Trade in Goods, Trade in Services, and Agriculture.

Cindy
Ms. Cindy Rayo Zapata
Director General, Ministry of Economy, Mexico
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Cindy Rayo Zapata is General Director of International Trade for Services and Investment, at the Ministry of Economy in Mexico. Cindy focuses her practice on international trade. She has acted as counsel of the Mexican government with respect to investment treaty matters and international trade policy issues. She has participated as a trade and investment negotiator of Mexico in numerous investment treaties and international trade agreements. She is responsible of the negotiation for e-commerce, investment facilitation and domestic regulation JSI at the WTO and is leading the works, from the Mexican side, for the implementation of the Pacific Alliance Digital Market. Cindy Rayo has both Bachelor’s Degrees in International Relations and Law and a LLM in International Law.

 

 

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Ms. Joyce Lim
Deputy Director (Digital Economy), Ministry of Trade and Industry, Singapore
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Ms. Zulfia Karimova
Principal Regional Cooperation Specialist, ADB
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International development professional with diverse work experience, having worked with multilateral organizations like ADB, IMF, World Bank, UN; private sector and international NGOs, think tank/academia. Ms. Karimova has extensive experience in managing policy dialogue with senior government officials and complex programs in [sub]regional cooperation and integration (RCI), corporate finance and social sectors, as well as in strategic coordination and implementation of ADB-wide strategies and policies.

Ms. Karimova led and coordinated multi-stakeholder and cross-sectoral efforts in the conceptualization and design of innovative development initiatives for ADB operations. She coordinates diverse range of RCI, trade and investment, capacity development, and co-financing. She manages RCI projects in the People's Republic of China, Mongolia, and subregional trade initiatives in the Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation (CAREC) Program and Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS). 

Mr. Jayvee Santos
Mr. Jayvee Santos
ASYCUDA Regional Coordinator, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD)
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Mr. Jayvee Santos, a citizen of the Philippines, was appointed as the ASYCUDA Programme's Regional Coordinator for the Pacific in 2018 and is based in Suva, Fiji, where he oversees ASYCUDA projects and technical assistance in 15 countries and territories in the region.

Prior to this current appointment, Jayvee started his career with UNCTAD as a local project staff and later as project manager in the Philippine Tax Computerization Project from 1997-2000. He served as an ASYCUDA IT Expert from 2001-2018 working with more than 20 countries in the Asia-Pacific region, including leading the implementation of ASYCUDA in Timor-Leste from 2002 to 2006 and in Fiji from 2014 to 2017. He brings with him extensive experience working on customs reform, modernisation and automation.

Jayvee studied public management in the University of the Philippines and computer science in Ateneo de Manila. He is married with two children.

Mr. Ibrahima Nour Eddine Diagne
Mr. Ibrahima Nour Eddine Diagne
CEO, GAINDE 2000
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Mr. Ibrahima Nour Eddine DIAGNE is currently the CEO of GAINDE 2000 and served as President of the African Performance Institute (API), a pan-African think tank and animation group dedicated to the promotion of digital technology, from May 2017 to April 2021.

Mr. DIAGNE capitalises more than 24 years of experience in the digital field with a particular focus on e-commerce, dematerialization and trade facilitation. He is an expert of the United Nations and, in this capacity, served as Rapporteur for Africa of the United Nations Centre for Electronic Transactions (UN/CEFACT) from 2006 to 2018. He also founded and chaired the African Alliance for Electronic Trade (AAEC) from 2009 to 2017.

Mr. DIAGNE holds a B.sc, an MBA and an M. Sc from HEC Montréal and HEC Paris. He has a certificate from the Stanford University Graduate School of Business on Transformation Management and Leadership.

He is the chairman of the National Digital Council of Senegal and a member of the Board of Directors of E-Futura (French Association for Digital Transformation), and Assane Seck University in Ziguinchor (Senegal). He is also a member of the Academic Council of the Virtual University of Senegal.

He currently chairs the Steering Committee of the National Consortium for Electronic Commerce set up by the Ministry of Commerce to federate national actors around a federating initiative and a carrier of added value.

His commitment focuses on positioning the continent in the digital economy and maximizing opportunities for young people in this direction.

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Mr. Poul Hansen
Chief, Trade Facilitation Section, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development
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Mr. Poul Hansen is responsible for issues relating to Trade Facilitation at the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), Division on Technology and Logistics (DTL). UNCTAD’s mandate is to assist developing and least developed countries as well as economies in transition integrating into global trade, promoting development- centered globalization and inclusive and sustainable growth and development for these countries.

Poul has extensive experience in the area of trade and transport facilitation, having worked for almost 20 years in the UN system on issues such as international trade, transportation, development, international standards, previously working at the UNECE as Secretary for the TIR and Harmonization Conventions. In addition, during his UN career Poul has also worked in the field of international sports policy as Head of the UN Office on Sport and Development and Peace.

Prior to joining the UN, Poul worked for more than 10 years in the private sector in areas such public affairs, management consulting and logistics with organizations including Ernst & Young, FreightForward Europe (FFE), the International Road Transport Union (IRU) and the Ziegler Group, gaining experience in a number of industries including transportation and logistics, automotive, manufacturing and retail.

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Ms. Soo Hyun Kim
Economic Affairs Officer, ESCAP
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Ms. Soo Hyun Kim is Economic Affairs Officer, Trade Policy and Facilitation Section, Trade, Investment and Innovation Division, United Nations ESCAP. She is currently managing capacity building projects on cross-border paperless trade and trade facilitation in the age of pandemics; and supporting the implementation of the Framework Agreement on Facilitation of Cross-border Paperless Trade in Asia and the Pacific. Previously she worked in the Investment and Enterprise Development Section with research focus on foreign direct investment (FDI) and investment regimes and their impact on sustainable development. She also worked to promote public-private sector dialogue by organizing the Asia-Pacific Business Forum (APBF) and supporting the ESCAP Sustainable Business Network (ESBN). Prior to this, she worked at the United Nations Secretariat in New York; local government (United Kingdom); and higher education institution (United Kingdom). She holds master’s degrees in business administration (specialisation in financial management) from TiasNimbas Business School (Netherlands) and library and information science from Loughborough University (United Kingdom).  Email: [email protected]

Ms. Sanchita Basu Das
Ms. Sanchita Basu Das
Economist, ADB
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Ms. Sanchita Basu-Das is Economist at the Regional Cooperation and Integration Division of the Economic Research and Regional Cooperation Department of ADB. She contributes to the division’s flagship publications, knowledge products and analytical studies. Her core research interests include regional cooperation initiatives and issues related to them, such as trade, logistics, industrial corridors, tourism, digital economy, institutions and others. Sanchita has published in international journals including the Singapore Economic Review, Journal of World Trade and Asia Pacific Economic Literature, authored/ edited books and book chapters and wrote for media. Sanchita joined ADB in November 2018 and initially served as an Economist in the South Asia Regional Department.

Prior to joining the ADB, Sanchita was the Lead Researcher for Economic Affairs at the ASEAN Studies Centre of ISEAS-Yusof Ishak Institute, Singapore. She was concurrently a Fellow of the Regional Economic Studies Program, coordinator of Singapore APEC Studies Centre and a co-editor of Journal of Southeast Asian Economies (JSEAE), all housed under the same institute. Sanchita earned her PhD in International Political Economy from Nanyang Technology University, Singapore, and her Masters in Economics and Business Management from the University of Delhi and the National University of Singapore respectively.

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H.E. Ms. Ainura Usenbekova
Deputy Minister, Ministry of Economy and Commerce, Kyrgyzstan
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03.2022 - on maternity leave

Deputy Minister of Economy and Commerce of the Kyrgyz Republic

05.2021 – 03.2022

 

 

Deputy Head of the Department of Strategic Development and Planning of the Presidential Administration of the Kyrgyz Republic

09.2019 – 05.2021

Head of the Development Monitoring Sector of the Department of Strategic Development Policy, Economics and Finance of the Office of the President of the Kyrgyz Republic

  • implementation of a national development monitoring system;
  • identification of the consistency of all government strategies, programs and development policies with the National Development Strategy-2040;
  • analysis of development, identification of problems and risks, preparation of adjustments to strategic documents;
  • coordination of the implementation of an automated development monitoring system;
  • preparation of analytical documents on the implementation of the National Development Strategy of the Kyrgyz Republic;
  • coordination of the work of the National Council for Sustainable Development of the Kyrgyz Republic;
  • coordination of the work of the Committee for the Development of Industry and Entrepreneurship of the Kyrgyz Republic under the National Council for Sustainable Development of the Kyrgyz Republic;
  • participation in the work to coordinate the implementation of the SDGs in Kyrgyzstan, including the implementation of the SDG indicators into the national monitoring system;
  • monitoring and evaluation of the implementation of national programs, tasks, including the achievement of the SDGs in Kyrgyzstan;
  • coordination of the work "Integrated National Financing Framework (INFF)", participated in the process towards DFA and INFF implementation, funded by the SDG Joint Fund

06.2018

09.2019

Project Coordinator at UNDP in Kyrgyz Republic «Strengthening capacities for sustainable development finance in the CIS region». The project objective was to raise awareness and strengthen capacity of ministries and government agencies, national financial institutions, business entities and entrepreneurs in dealing with the international financial institutions (IFI) projects in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) countries

 

03.2017 – 06.2018

Council for development of business and business at the Parliament of the Kyrgyz Republic (public structure)

The deputy head of the Secretariat of Council for development of business and business under Parliament of the Kyrgyz Republic

- interaction with business associations, the enterprises and other subjects and identification the most urgent economic problems which can be solved with the assistance of Parliament;

- rendering assistance to groups of business associations for definition of problems and elimination of the corresponding obstacles in a way to inclusive growth, by carrying out the analysis and their consideration during the meetings with representatives of a business community, parliamentarians, during the meetings of Council;

- participation in development bills / change of processes of implementation of the existing laws;

- support of the effective relations and the communication line with business associations, parliaments and public authorities;

- coordinated the process on the implementation of the SDGs in Kyrgyzstan, strengthening the participation of the Parliament in the implementation and achievement of the SDGs in Kyrgyzstan

12.2016 – 05.2017

Local consultant Partnership for actions for green economy (PAGE) in partnership with UNDP-UNEP Initiative "Poverty and the environment" (PEI)

- participation in development of the survey report - Inclusive "green" economy in the Kyrgyz Republic

11.2016 – 03.2017

JSC Guarantee Fund - the head of department of strategic development and providing guarantees

- development of a conceptual basis of short-term and long-term development of Fund;

- coordination of activities for interaction of Fund with public authorities, the international organizations, and business by community and civil society;

09.2015 - 11.2016

Ministry of Economics of the Kyrgyz Republic

Head of department of regulation by business activity

- implementation of function on development and realization of state policy in license and allowing and control and supervising spheres, development of business and optimization of the regulatory legal base of regulation of business activity, development of free economic zones and institute of RIA;

- ensuring carrying out the state regulatory reform on decrease in administrative barriers of business;

- providing conducting examination of RIA, also optimization and improvement of institute of RIA;

- providing the permanent platform on interaction with business

- development of offers on advance and promotion of green economy through the private sector;

- work in development in partnership with the Authorized representation of the Issyk kul region "The Strategy of Sustainable Development of the Issyk Kul Region for 2015-2025" founded on a clustering and green economy

- participation in the course of start in KR of the Initiative of the UN of UNEP "Partner Actions for Green Economy" (PAGE)

- participation and work in preparation of the Kyrgyz Republic in the Batumi Eighth conference of ministers "The environment for Europe", at a meeting of subcommittee of Climatic Investment fund in Mexico, implementation of the project of "Investments and competitiveness in the Central Asia Phase of II"

- participation in the implementation of the SDGs in Kyrgyzstan in the "Private Sector and SDGs" component, achieving the SDGs with private sector participation

02.2015 – 09.2015

Ministry of Economics of the Kyrgyz Republic

Head of department of regulation by license and allowing activity and RIA, Managements of regulation of enterprise activity / acting head of department of regulation by business activity

Similar functions

06.2014 -02.2015

Ministry of Economics of the Kyrgyz Republic, Head of department of regulation by license and allowing activity and RIA, Managements of regulation of business activity

- ensuring development of state policy in the sphere is license - an authorization system and its optimization;

- development and implementation of offers on simplification of an order of obtaining allowing documents and reduction of their quantity;

- carrying out optimization of the regulatory legal base regulating business activity

- conducting examination on the regulatory impact analysis

- carrying out the state regulatory policy. 

05.2013 – 06.2014

Office of the President of the Kyrgyz Republic, Expert of department of the financial and economic analysis and monitoring the development/secretariat of National Council on sustainable development of KR for 2013-2017

- the analysis of a macroeconomic situation in the country, development of forecasts of a succession of events in the economic sphere and preparation of information and analytical and expert materials and offers for the President, the Chief of staff of the President and his deputies;

- ensuring examination of drafts of laws, decrees and orders of the President, orders and orders of the Chief of staff of the President and his deputies for financial and economic questions;

- participation in the development of concepts, programs, strategy and other documents of the Kyrgyz Republic

- organization of holding meetings of National Council for sustainable development of KR

- carrying out monitoring of realization National strategy for sustainable development of KR and preparation of analytical materials 

12.2010 –06.2014

Office of the President of the Kyrgyz Republic, Expert of sector of release of acts of Office

- Implementation of timely registration and operational release of decisions of the President of the Kyrgyz Republic and Chief of staff of the President of KR;

- introduction of the account and completing of primary materials of decisions of the President of KR, Chief of staff of the President of KR, preparation and their delivery to Archive of the President of KR;

- guiding of the protocol of meetings of the Manual.

08.2010 – 12.2010

Administration of the President of the Kyrgyz Republic, Expert of department of economic development and monitoring

- the analysis of a macroeconomic situation, elaboration of suggestions for improvement of structure of economy regarding development of tourism, improvement of the business environment and regional development;

- development of offers after acceptance of prime measures for improvement of a business environment;

- coordination of work on development of the state comprehensive programs of development of economy, short-term and medium-term macroeconomic forecasts, the strategy of economic development of the country for the medium and long-term outlook;

- monitoring and an assessment of implementation of state programs on implementation of economic reforms, programs of social and economic development;

- development of drafts of regulations and other documents on questions, development of business, tourism, etc.;

- implementation of examination of drafts of regulations and other documents on the questions carried to competence of department

 

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Ms. Valerie Picard
Deputy Director, Global Alliance for Trade Facilitation
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Valerie Picard is Deputy Director of the Global Alliance for Trade Facilitation, a public private partnership working to make trade simpler, faster and more cost-effective in developing countries.  Based at the International Chamber of Commerce’s global headquarters in Paris, she leads ICC’s contribution to the Global Alliance for Trade Facilitation, working with her team on business engagement and strategic communications. In this role, Ms. Picard collaborates closely with ICC’s network of businesses, national committees, and chambers of commerce.

Prior to taking up her current role, Ms. Picard practiced law for 20 years both in private practice and in-house. She joined ICC and the Global Alliance for Trade Facilitation from Bolloré Transport & Logistics, where she advised on legal matters relating to public private partnerships and the development and operation of ports and terminals in Africa and Asia. Ms. Picard holds a JD/LL.M from Duke University School of Law and a BA in Government from Smith College.

Ms. Marlynne Hopper
Ms. Marlynne Hopper
Deputy Head, Standards and Trade Development Facility (STDF), World Trade Organization
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Ms. Marlynne Hopper is the Deputy Head of the Secretariat for the Standards and Trade Development Facility (STDF), a global partnership to facilitate safe trade, housed at the World Trade Organization. With longstanding expertise in trade, development and agriculture, Marlynne currently leads on STDF's knowledge work, as well as monitoring, evaluation and learning. Prior to joining the STDF in 2008, Marlynne worked on agricultural policy analysis and capacity development, including with FAO, GIZ and the World Bank. She holds a Master's Degree in International Affairs from Georgetown University, Washington D.C.

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Mr. Jonathan Koh
Managing Director, Trade Facilitation Pte Ltd
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Jonathan is Managing Director of Trade Facilitation Pte Ltd (TFPL), a consultancy firm with specialty in trade facilitation, trade policy, single window, and customs reform and modernisation programmes. TFPL comprises trade experts and associates to offer exceptional expertise to support the international trade community.

Jonathan had hands-on experience in over 40 customs / trade facilitation programmes globally, He was also involved in over 20 Single Windows / Customs digitalisation projects, several regional connectivity projects, as an expert resource for the ASEAN Single Window, as well as the Pacific Alliance regional connectivity connecting four Latin American countries. He served as the Project Director for the many customs / trade facilitation implementation projects including Kenya, Qatar and Oman. He was key consultant to the Government of Hong Kong SAR for their new Trade Single Window. He helped developed the National Trade Facilitation Strategy and Roadmap for Government of Greece. He served as an expert resource for ASEAN Economic Community and helped developed the ASEAN’s Seamless Trade Facilitation Indicators.

Jonathan had also served as an expert resource to various international organisations in trade facilitation and policy issues. He recently served a visiting scholar with the International Monetary Fund (IMF). He co-authored the chapter “Customs Administrations and Digitalization” in the new IMF reference book - "Customs Matters: Strengthening Customs Administration in a Changing World", released in June 2022.

Jonathan had completed projects with the Asian Development Bank on customs’ capacity for cross border e-commerce. He served as a member of the international Advisory committee for the United Nations Network of Experts for Paperless Trade in Asia and the Pacific (UNNeXT). He also an invited member of Alibaba Standardisation thinktank group. He has authored several papers including the often-cited paper - Ten Years of Single Window Implementation: Lessons Learned (United Nations, 2011), as well as many others published by United Nations, Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia and others.

 

 

Mr. Kijin Kim
Mr. Kijin Kim
Senior Economist, ADB
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Mr. Kijin Kim is Economist in the Economic Research and Regional Cooperation Department, Asian Development Bank. Since he joined the ADB in 2017, he has been working on trade, trade facilitation, and trade finance within the context of regional cooperation and integration (RCI). He contributed to ADB’s publications on these areas including the Asian Economic Integration Report, Trade Finance Gaps, Growth, and Jobs Survey, and Asia-Pacific Trade Facilitation Report.

Before joining the ADB, he was a research fellow of the Regional Economics Applications Laboratory at the University of Illinois since 2012. From 2004 to 2010, he worked as Economist at the Bank of Korea. He earned his PhD in economics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2016, focusing on research within the fields of regional economics and applied econometrics, centered on the role of labor markets, the effects of heterogeneity in consumption spending and labor market participation on regional economies.

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Ms. Sonal Priyanka
Head of Origination, Incomlend
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Mr. Ian Sayers
Mr. Ian Sayers
Senior Adviser, International Trade Centre
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Ian Sayers is ITC’s Senior Adviser for Access to Financing and investment. ITC helps MSMEs to upgrade their skills and find the financing they need at a fair cost to accelerate sustainable business growth, value-addition and competitiveness in international trade. Ian can be contacted at: The International Trade Centre, Geneva E: [email protected]

ITC works with industry leaders, financing providers, business development services, policy-makers, MSMEs and communities of enterprises in more than 120 countries to open-up new markets, reduce operational risks, improve ESG performance, resilience, sustainable COVID recovery and the expansion of clean trade.

ITC provides a comprehensive package of information platforms, publications, technical and advisory assistance through its donor-funded projects and public goods at: www.intracen.org

Ms. Hannah Nguyen
Ms. Hannah Nguyen
Director, ICC Digital Standards Initiative (DSI)
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In 2021, Hannah Nguyen joined the Digital Standards Initiative - a collaborative cross-industry effort to advance the digitization of trade globally. Her focus is on engaging industry participants, standards developing organizations, solution providers, governments and intergovernmental organizations to harmonize public and private sector’s standardization efforts across the ecosystem.

In her previous role at one of the world's largest commodity logistics service providers, she led business development efforts for C. Steinweg Group in Asia Pacific for 9 years, resulting in key expansion projects in Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam. Earlier in her career, Hannah provided market intelligence and advisory work to corporates interested in actionable advice on how to compete and grow in Asia. She also spent 2 years at Enterprise Singapore, working closely with global traders, brokers, exchanges, financial institutions and other intermediaries to drive the growth of the commodities and derivatives sector in Singapore.

Mr. Saurav Bhattacharyya
Mr. Saurav Bhattacharya
CEO, Proxtera
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Mr. Saurav Bhattacharya is an academic scholar since his ‘O’ levels (1994).  Born in India, Saurav won the overseas undergraduate scholarship with Singapore Airlines under the Ministry of Education (MOE) of Singapore, which brought him to Singapore in 1996, his home for over 25 years.

Having completed his undergraduate studies in Computer Engineering (2000) from NTU he pursued a research career at NTU.  Over his 4.5 year research stint at NTU, he published over 24 papers in international conferences and journals spanning various industry verticals in embedded systems.  Saurav has been a keen proponent of standards and has served as an international editor / co-editor for technical ISO standards.  He secured his Master's in Computer Engineering from NTU in 2006 before going on to spin-off Quantum Inventions from technology born out of NTU. 

His entrepreneurial journey started as the Co-founder & CEO of Quantum Inventions (2006-2021), a company focussed in Mobility Intelligence for Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS).  QI grew to be a formidable company in ITS solutions and covets several awards, including the Young Innovator Award under the Land Transport Excellence Awards 2010 (by the Ministry of Transport of Singapore).    He raised 3 rounds of capital, and grew regionally in South East Asia to over 130 employees, before it was wholly acquired in 2017 by Continental Corporation – a global automotive supplier, with approx. 40 billion euros in sales globally; where he served in executive leadership position for 4.5 years.

Saurav was appointed the first CEO of Proxtera Pte Ltd. (Jan-2022), a company born out of Business sans Borders (BSB), a global initiative, by the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) and the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to create an open connector of business platforms, trade associations, government bodies, financial services and other services providers.

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Mr. Phan Thanh Son
Head of Global Transaction Services Division (Deputy CEO), Techcombank
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Graduated with a Master’s Degree in Economics from National Economics University and held various positions in Global Markets at Standard Chartered Bank Vietnam, Citibank Vietnam, Citigroup Global Markets Ltd Hongkong. His last post was Deputy Chief Executive Officer at TienPhong Bank before being appointed to the position of Head of Treasury and Financial Markets Division in January 2011.

Ms. Pramila Crivelli
Ms. Pramila Crivelli
Economist, ADB
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Dr. Pramila A. Crivelli is an economist in the Economic Research and Regional Cooperation Department of the Asian Development Bank (ADB). Her main fields of specialization are applied econometrics in international trade policy, regional trade agreements, trade negotiations, rules or origin, non-tariff measures, and geographical indications.  At ADB, she is also conducting research on digital trade and supporting the APEC regional forum.

Prior to joining ADB in November 2020, she was an assistant professor at the Goethe University Frankfurt leading the Chair of International Trade. Her work has been published in academic peer-reviewed journals including the Journal of International Economics and the World Economy.

She received her PhD from the University of Geneva, Switzerland. She accumulated extensive experience in applied economic policy and technical cooperation serving as an economic affairs officer at the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, researching at the European University Institute and the World Trade Organization, and carrying out consultancies for various clients in Asia and Africa. She has a strong expertise in delivering capacity building and advisory services to governments, public and private institutions, and trade negotiators in multilateral and regional fora.

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H.E. Mr. Sopheak Sok
Secretary of State, Ministry of Commerce, Cambodia
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H.E. Sopheak joined MoC in 1992 and was promoted as Director of ASEAN and International Organizations Department in 1999 after which he has assumed many key roles as, among others, trade negotiator for Cambodia’s integration into ASEAN, ASEAN Plus-One FTAs, and the World Trade Organization (WTO). He was promoted as Director General of International Trade, MoC in 2007 and moved to work as Director General of the General Directorate for Trade Support Services in 2014, where he has been promoting the implementation of trade reform agenda and trade facilitation, including but not limited to, development of online business registration, certification of origin, and online trademarks applications, etc. H.E. Mr. Sok Sopheak serves as Secretary of State since 2018 and has been the Cambodia’s Trade Negotiation Committee (TNC) lead in trade negotiations on the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) which was signed on November 15, 2020. He was also Cambodia’s lead negotiator for the Cambodia-China Free Trade Agreement (CCFTA) which was signed on October 12, 2020.

Mr. Ratnakar Adhikari
Mr. Ratnakar Adhikari
Executive Director, Enhanced Integrated Framework (EIF) Executive Secretariat
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Dr. Ratnakar Adhikari has been serving the Executive Secretariat for the EIF at the WTO as its Executive Director since October 2013. Previously, he was the Chief Executive Director of South Asia Watch on Trade, Economics and Environment, a Kathmandu-based regional think-tank. Previously he served, among others, as a Senior Adviser to the National Planning Commission, Government of Nepal, and as Trade Programme Specialist for UNDP, Asia Pacific Regional Centre in Colombo, Sri Lanka.

Dr Adhikari has conducted extensive research as well as published in the areas of international trade, aid for trade, competition policy and trade facilitation, particularly from the perspective of the Least Developed Countries. He obtained his PhD from the University of Warwick, UK; his Masters of International Law and Economics from the World Trade Institute, Switzerland; and his Masters of Commerce from the University of Delhi, India.

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Ms. Alina Antoci
Senior Private Sector Development Specialist, World Bank
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Alina joined the World Bank Group in 2004 where she led the development and implementation of the “Logistics Performance Indicators (LPI)” project for the three editions of the “Connecting to Compete–Trade logistics in the global economy” reports (https://lpi.worldbank.org/). She is the lead author for the “Trade and Transport Facilitation Assessment–A Practical Guide for Country Implementation and authored chapters in various publications, including the World Economic Forum “Global Enabling Trade Report” (2008 and 2009 editions) and to the World Bank Group publication on “Border Management Modernization”. She is currently co-leading the publication of a new book highlighting new trends in trade facilitation, border management and customs modernization. In her current position with the Global Trade & Regional Integration Unit of the World Bank Group, Alina contributes to high-level policy dialogues, provides technical leadership and leads operational implementation of projects in Trade Facilitation, Border Management and Customs Modernization in over 70 countries, with a focus on high developmental impact.

Prior to joining the World Bank Group in 2004, she worked for the Harvard Center for International Development (CID), the European Commission, and the Romanian Ministry of Finance. She holds a Master’s in Mathematics and Information Technology, Operational Research and Statistics from Romania, a Certificate in International Tax Policy and Administration from Harvard Law School and a Master’s in Public Administration, International Trade and Finance from John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

 

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Ms. Yan Zhang
Economic Affairs Officer, United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE)
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Ms. Yan Zhang has been working at the UNECE since 2009 and at the United Nations Office at Geneva (UNOG) from 2002 to 2009. 

Ms. Zhang started her career at the UN through the National Competitive Examinations (NCE) organized by the United Nations in 2001.  Ms. Zhang is currently working on programmes on trade facilitation and electronic business, especially in charge of UN/LOCODE and support to the United Nations Centre on Trade Facilitation and Electronic Business (UN/CEFACT).

Ms. Zhang was appointed as convenor of ISO TC 154/ JWG1 in 2017 and is in charge of liaison with ISO and other international organizations.

Mr. Christian Lembke
Mr. Christian Lembke
Technical Attaché, World Customs Organization
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Mr Christian Lembke, as a Technical Attaché under the WCO Compliance and Facilitation Directorate since June 2020, is mainly involved in the area of the WCO Data Model, the online platform RAM-MAP SWIM, Advance Passenger Information as well as the Globally Networked Customs concept.

He has previously worked as a customs officer at Frankfurt am Main Airport (Germany) in the field of risk assessment for air cargo shipments since 2005. He has been involved in a risk assessment project in an EU working group at the international level.

Mr. Dulguun Damdin-Od
Mr. Dulguun Damdin-Od
Executive Director, International Think Tank for Landlocked Developing Countries (ITTLLDC)
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Dulguun Damdin-Od was elected the Executive Director of the International Think Tank for Landlocked Developing Countries (ITTLLDC) by the Board of Governors of the ITTLLDC in 2022, after serving as the Director of Operations since 2019 and as the Research Coordinator since 2014- when the ITTLLDC was still in its’ interim phase. With the help of his continuous dedication and commitment, the idea of establishing a think tank dedicated to the particular needs and problems of landlocked developing countries was able to come to fruition when the Multilateral Agreement for the Establishment of an International Think Tank for Landlocked Developing Countries entered into force on October 6th of 2017, legally establishing the first ever international intergovernmental institution headquartered in Mongolia, as well as establishing the first ever Intergovernmental Institution of the Group of Landlocked Developing Countries at the United Nations.

Before devoting himself fulltime to the work of the ITTLLDC, Dulguun launched his professional career as an interpreter for the Third Road Project of ADB Mongolia in 2002, and since then has held multiple positions at various sectors of the government, such as the Chief of Foreign Relation Division at the Mongolian Youth Federation in 2003-2005, Officer of the International Cooperation Division at the Ministry of Fuel and Energy of Mongolia in 2005-2008 and at the Ministry of Mineral Resources and Energy of Mongolia in 2009-2010, Senior Officer of the International Cooperation Division at the Ministry of Mining of Mongolia in 2012-2014. In 2014 he served as the national consultant for the Mining Infrastructure Investment Support (MINIS) Project of the World Bank.

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Mr. Xu Jun
Director, Division of Multilateral Affairs, Department of International Cooperation, General Administration of Customs of the People's Republic of China
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Experience

2021–2022                International Cooperation Dept.      China Customs

Director for Multilateral

 

2019–2021                International Cooperation Dept.      China Customs

Director of General Office

 

2015–2019                International Cooperation Dept.      China Customs

Acting Director for Multilateral

2011–2015                International Cooperation Dept.      China Customs

Deputy Director for Multilateral

2007–2011                International Cooperation Dept.      China Customs

Principle staff for Multilateral

2001–2007                International Cooperation Dept.      China Customs

Principle staff for Bilateral

1997–2001    Airport Customs  Jinan Customs District of China Customs

Customs Inspector

 

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Mr. Loh Sin Yong
Director, TradeTrust, Infocomm Media Development Authority, Singapore
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As Director for TradeTrust at IMDA, Sin Yong is responsible for driving the digital transformation of Singapore’s trade and logistics sectors to help businesses maintain relevance and competitiveness by evolving ahead of the rapidly progressing digital economy. Sin Yong has over 30 years of professional IT and leadership experience in trade facilitation, logistics, maritime domains particularly in the China, South East Asia and South Asia markets. He represents Singapore as Head of Delegation at UNCEFACT and holds a Bachelor’s degree in Computer & Information Sciences, a Master’s degree in Management of Technology, and a Graduate Certificate in Intellectual Property Law.

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Mr. Sung Heun Ha
Director of International Business and Cooperation, Korea Trade Network
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Sung Heun has over 20 years of experience in the trade facilitation industry. Through his career, he has worked on many projects across the Asia Pacific, Africa and South America. He is currently the Director of International Business and Cooperation, Korea Trade Network (KTNET). In KTNET, he oversees the planning and development of cross-border paperless trade services and implementation of Single Window and other e-Government system projects in overseas by Korea’s national paperless trade platform development experience. In this capacity, he has initiated several cross-border public and private partnership programs for cross-border paperless trade among Asian countries, including Pan Asian e-Commerce Alliance (PAA) and world-first cross-border electronic certificate of an origin exchange project between Republic of Korea and Taiwan province of China. Currently, he is an advisor to UN Network of Experts of Trade and Transportation and a chairperson of the technical workgroup of the PAA, managing the technical framework of cross-border paperless trade service of PAA. His previous experience with the Trade and Investment division in the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific lends a strategic edge to Sung Heun to make strategic decisions related to paperless trade and trade facilitation.

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Mr. Kotaro Hayashi
General Manager of Alliance Business Department, TradeWaltz Inc.
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Prior to joining TradeWaltz Inc., Serving consultancy services to clients in the travel and transportation industry as a senior consultant at IBM Japan. He is well versed in analyzing the business process and creating a strategy that accelerates digital transformation. In TradeWaltz Inc., He is responsible for creating partnerships and alliances with both nations and industry platformers worldwide. In addition, he will be a representative of TradeWaltz Inc. APAC Representative Office in Singapore this coming October, which will establish to enhance the synergetic collaboration across Asia and the Pacific.

for more information, please contact

Trade, Investment and Innovation Division +66 2 288-1234 [email protected]
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