Board of Governors
We report to a Board of Governors that reflects the cultural diversity of our organisation. Our Governors are picked by ASEM partners, and they hold office for three years. Many of our Governors are currently in ambassadorial positions; also on the Board are individuals with a wealth of experience in the areas of policy-making and education.
The Board meets three times in two years. It reviews our strategy and policies to ensure that we are keeping with the ASEM's principles and priorities. The Board also oversees our finances and budgeting, and this includes granting approval for our projects and programmes.
The Board elects a new Chair and Deputy Chair every year. To ensure fair representation, if the Chair is a European, the Deputy Chair will be an Asian, and vice-versa. The Board is also responsible for appointing our Executive Director and Deputy Executive Director.
CHAIRPERSON 2014: Ambassador Rosario G. MANALO (The Philippines)
VICE-CHAIRPERSON 2014: Ambassador Claude BLANCHEMAISON (France)
- Ambassador NYAN LynnGovernor for the ASEAN Secretariat
- Mr Adrian LOCHRINGovernor for Australia
- Ms Gabriele MEON-TSCHÜRTZGovernor for Austria
- Mr Muhammad Mahfuzur RAHMANGovernor for Bangladesh
- Ambassador Gerard COCKX Governor for Belgium
- Pengiran Dato YUNUS Mahmud Governor for Brunei Darussalam
- Mr Christo POLENDAKOV Governor for Bulgaria
- Mr NAY Meng EangGovernor for Cambodia
- Ambassador LÜ YongshouGovernor for China
- Assistant Minister Dubravka PLEJIĆ MARKOVIĆGovernor for Croatia
- High Commissioner Maria MICHAILGovernor for Cyprus
- Ambassador Rudolf HYKLGovernor for the Czech Republic
- Ambassador Prof. Jørgen Ørstrøm MØLLERGovernor for Denmark
- Prof Rein RAUDGovernor for Estonia
- Mr Michael MATTHIESSENGovernor for the European Union
- Ms Eva BIAUDETGovernor for Finland
- Ambassador Claude BLANCHEMAISONGovernor for France
- Prof Helmut HAUSSMANNGovernor for Germany
- Ambassador Dr Sotirios MOUSOURISGovernor for Greece
- Ambassador Dr András BALOGHGovernor for Hungary
- High Commissioner Vijay THAKUR SINGHGovernor for India
- Ambassador SOEMADI BrotodiningratGovernor for Indonesia
- Mr Conor O’CLERYGovernor for Ireland
- Ambassador Paolo CRUDELEGovernor for Italy
- Ambassador Prof Takahiro SHINYO Governor for Japan
- N.N.Governor for Kazakhstan
- N.N.Governor for Korea
- Mr Viroth SUNDARAGovernor for the Lao PDR
- Ms Daiga UPENIECEGovernor for Latvia
- Ambassador Egidijus MEILŪNASGovernor for Lithuania
- Dr Jacques F. POOSGovernor for Luxembourg
- High Commissioner Dato' HUSNI ZAI YaacobGovernor for Malaysia
- Dr Carmen SAMMUTGovernor for Malta
- Ambassador Banzragch DELGERMAA Governor for Mongolia
- Ambassador Htay AnugGovernor for Myanmar
- High Commissioner Bernadette CAVANAGHGovernor for New Zealand
- Prof Wim.A.L.STOKHOFGovernor for the Netherlands
- Ambassador Tormod ENDRESENGovernor for Norway
- High Commissioner Tanveer Akhtar KHASKHELIGovernor for Pakistan
- Ambassador Rosario G. MANALO Governor for the Philippines
- Ambassador Zenon KOSINIAK-KAMYSZGovernor for Poland
- Ambassador Afonso Henriques ABREU DE AZEREDO MALHEIROGovernor for Portugal
- Ambassador Gheorghe MAGHERUGovernor for Romania
- Ambassador Leonid P. MOISEEVGovernor for the Russian Federation
- Prof Leo TAN Wee HinGovernor for Singapore
- Ambassador Radomír BOHÁČGovernor for Slovakia
- Ambassador Dr Marjan CENCENGovernor for Slovenia
- Mr Ramón María MORENO GONZÁLEZ Governor for Spain
- Ambassador Olof EHRENKRONAGovernor for Sweden
- Ambassador Thomas KUPFER Governor for Switzerland
- Ambassador Sawanit KONGSIRIGovernor for Thailand
- High Commissioner Antony John PHILLIPSONGovernor for the United Kingdom
- Ambassador LE Cong PhungGovernor for Viet Nam
Ambassador NYAN LynnGovernor for the ASEAN Secretariat
The biography of Ambassador Nyan Lynn will be available soon.
Mr Adrian LOCHRINGovernor for Australia
The biography and photo of Mr Lochrin will be available soon.
Ms Gabriele MEON-TSCHÜRTZGovernor for Austria
The biography and photo of Governor Gabriele Meon-Tschürtz will be available shortly.
Mr Muhammad Mahfuzur RAHMANGovernor for Bangladesh
The biography of Mr Rahman will be available soon.
Ambassador Gerard COCKXGovernor for Belgium
The biography and photo of Ambassador Cockx will be available soon.
Pengiran Dato YUNUS MahmudGovernor for Brunei Darussalam
Pengiran Dato Yunus Mahmud is currently the Deputy Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade. Having studied Humanities for his Bachelor’s degree in the United Kingdom, he pursued his Masters in International Relations at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University in the United States.
His career with the Brunei Ministry of Foreign Affairs began in 1981, training at the Japanese Foreign Service Institute in Japan. He was then appointed as the Second Secretary at the Brunei High Commission in Singapore and later the Private Secretary to the Bruneian Minister of Foreign Affairs.
Pengiran Yunus was then the First Secretary at the Brunei High Commission in London and Deputy Director of the ASEAN Department at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Among other foreign postings, he was variously appointed Charge d’Affaires in Jordan, Ambassador to Cambodia, Greece, Ireland and Belgium and High Commissioner to the United Kingdom and Nordic Countries.
[Last updated 17/11/08]
Mr Christo POLENDAKOVGovernor for Bulgaria
Mr Christo Polendakov heads the Department for South and South-East Asia with the AAO Directorate of the Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and assumed the position of ASEF Governor for Bulgaria in November 2013.
Mr Polendakov is a career diplomat and since 1993 has served with the Department for Asia, Africa, Latin America and Australia and the International Security Directorate of the Bulgarian MFA. He was posted to the Kingdom of Norway and with the Bulgarian Permanent Mission to the UN, OSCE and other International Organizations in Vienna, Republic of Austria. As of 2007 he served as Senior Planning and Co-ordination Officer in the Office of the OSCE Secretary General and as Deputy Director and Chief of Recruitment at the Department of Human Resources at the OSCE Secretariat in Vienna. Later he was the Director for Human Resources of the Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He is fluent in English, Persian and Russian.
Mr Polendakov is married and has two daughters.
[Last updated 14/11/2014]
Mr NAY Meng EangGovernor for Cambodia
The biography and photo of Ambassador Le will be available in due course.
Ambassador LÜ YongshouGovernor for China
Ambassador Lϋ has been a Commissioner of the United Nations Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission since 2005.
Before assuming his current post, Ambassador Lϋ was Second and First Secretary of the Permanent Mission of China to the United Nations and the Permanent Representative of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific.
Previously, he was Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to the Republic of Ghana. He has also worked in the Department of International Organizations and Conferences at the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and served as the Attaché of the Embassy of China in the Republic of Liberia.
Ambassador Lϋ pursued his studies at the Department of Foreign Languages of Shandong University and the Beijing Foreign Studies University.
[Last updated: 17/11/08]
Assistant Minister Dubravka PLEJIĆ MARKOVIĆGovernor for Croatia
The biography and photo of Ms Dubravka PLEJIĆ MARKOVIĆ will be available in due time.
High Commissioner Maria MICHAILGovernor for Cyprus
Mrs Maria Michail was born in Nicosia, Cyprus on October 14, 1973. She graduated from the University of Leicester, UK in 1994 with a Bachelor of Arts in Politics and obtained a Master of Arts in European Studies from the University of Surrey, UK in 1995.
She joined the Diplomatic Service in 1997.
After three years in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Nicosia, where she served consecutively in the Protocol and Consular Affairs Division, and the Cyprus Problem/Political Affairs Division, she was posted at the Embassy of Cyprus in Washington D.C. in 2000.
In 2003 she was appointed Deputy High Commissioner in London, and between 2006 and 2007 served at the Foreign Minister's Cabinet.
In 2008 she served as Deputy Director of the Cyprus Problem Division and since January 2009, she has been posted as Deputy Permanent Representative at the Mission of Cyprus to the United Nations in Geneva.
She is fluent in Greek and English and able to communicate in Spanish and French.
Maria Michail is married to Vladimir Glukhodid.
[Last updated: 03/05/2012]
Ambassador Rudolf HYKLGovernor for the Czech Republic
Ambassador Rudolf Hykl assumed his position of the Governor for the Czech Republic in February 2014. He currently serves as the Ambassador of the Czech Republic in Malaysia. Mr Hykl is a career diplomat with the Czech foreign service since 1990. In the past, he held two Head of Mission positions in the Asia region, as the Consul General of the Czech Republic in Hong Kong (2005-2010) and the Chargé d´Affaires of the Czech Republic in Singapore (2000-2004). Prior to that he was posted at the Czech Embassy in Washington DC, followed by an appointment of the Spokesman of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic in 1998. Ambassador Hykl is an economist by training, he also received master’s degree in public policy from Princeton. He is married with two children.
[Last updated: 26/03/2014]
Ambassador Prof. Jørgen Ørstrøm MØLLERGovernor for Denmark
Ambassador Møller is a Visiting Senior Research Fellow at the Institute of South-east Asian Studies, Singapore. He is also the former Ambassador to Singapore and Brunei.
He joined the Royal Danish Ministry for Foreign Affairs in 1968, and is well-versed in European community issues, having served as a national expert on EC co-operation for more than a decade.
Ambassador Møller is widely published, with 27 books to his credit, including Future of the European Community -- Implications for ASEAN and Thailand (1989) and The Future European Model (1995). He has also contributed articles to many magazines and journals including The Futurist, Strategic Review, and the Revue du Marché Commun.
[Last updated: 15/04/09]
Prof Rein RAUDGovernor for Estonia
The biography of Governor Rein Raud will be available shortly.
Mr Michael MATTHIESSENGovernor for the European Union
Michael Matthiessen is a Principal Advisor in the Asia and Pacific Department of the European External Action Service (EEAS) in Brussels, responsible for the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM). In this capacity he is also the Alternate Senior Official for the EU in ASEM and the Vice Chair of the EU Committee in the Council for Security Cooperation in the Asia Pacific (CSCAP).
Prior to becoming Principal Advisor for ASEM in July 2013, Michael Matthiessen was the EU Visiting Fellow at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore for the academic year 2012-2013. Prior to his Fellowship in Singapore, Michael Matthiessen had a diplomatic career for over 30 years, the last 15 years in senior positions in the European institutions. He joined the General Secretariat of the Council of the European Union in 1999 as a Head of Unit in the “Policy Unit” of the High Representative, responsible for the Situation Centre and civilian crisis management. In 2001, he became Director for civilian aspects of EU crisis management (ESDP). He then became the Personal Representative of the High Representative for Human Rights from 2005 to 2007 and for Parliamentary Affairs from 2007 to 2009. With the creation under the Lisbon Treaty of the European External Action Service (EEAS) in 2011, he became Director for Parliamentary Affairs in the EEAS.
Prior to joining the European institutions, Michael Matthiessen was a diplomat in the Danish Foreign Service from 1982 to 1999. He served as Head of Department for European Affairs in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Copenhagen from 1997 to 1999 and as Counsellor at the Permanent Representation of Denmark to the EU in Brussels from 1992 to 1997. He was the Private Secretary to the Prime Minister of Denmark from 1988 to 1992 and seconded as Deputy Director of the Private Office of the Secretary General of NATO in Brussels from 1985 to 1987.
Michael Matthiessen holds a Masters’ degree in Political Science from the University of Aarhus in Denmark (1982) and a Diplome d’Etudes Approfondies (DEA) from Science Po Paris (1981). In addition to his mother tongue Danish, he is fluent in English and French.
He was born in 1956 in Denmark. He is married and has two children.
[Last updated: 20/05/2014]
Ms Eva BIAUDETGovernor for Finland
Ms Biaudet recently ended her posting as OSCE Special Representative for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings.
She was formerly Minister of Health and Social Services as well as Gender Issues, and a member of the Finnish parliament for 16 years. Apart from being a Fraction Leader for four years, she maintained her membership in committees such as Foreign Affairs, Finance, Tax, Education and Science, Social and Labour Affairs, Social Affairs and Health, and Equality.
As an MP, she served in various delegations of Finland such as the Nordic Council, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, and the Conference of the Parliamentarians of the Arctic Region.
Prior to her political and diplomatic career, she pursued Law Studies at the University of Helsinki, Finland.
[Last updated: 12/4/2010]
Ambassador Claude BLANCHEMAISONGovernor for France
Ambassador Claude BLANCHEMAISON has previously served as Ambassador of France to Spain (2005 - 2007), to Russia and Tajikistan (2000 - 2003), to India (1996 - 2000) and to Vietnam (1989 - 1993). He was the Secretary General of the French Presidency 2008 of the Council of the European Union in the Prime Minister Office.
He has held different positions at the Foreign Ministry: Director for Asia Pacific between 1993 and 1996, Director for Europe in 1993, Joint-Secretary for East Asia between 1987 and 1989. From 1982 to 1985, he was appointed the Deputy Secretary General for European Cooperation in the Prime Minister Office.
He served at the Permanent Representation of France to the European Union in Brussels between 1978 and 1982. Prior to that appointment, he had worked in the European Cooperation Department between 1973 and 1978.
Ambassador Blanchemaison has graduated from “Ecole des Hautes Etudes Commerciales” (Business School – Paris) and from the Paris University.
[Last updated: 20 June 2011]
Prof Helmut HAUSSMANNGovernor for Germany
Prof Haussmann is currently a member of the German Parliament and spokesman for European Politics of the Liberal Parliamentary Group. He is also Senior Vice President of Cap Gemini Ernst & Young GmbH.
Prof Haussmann was formerly the Federal Economic Minister of Germany. A member of the Bundestag since 1976, he has served on numerous committees dealing with foreign affairs, economics, EC policies, and security policies. He was also Secretary-General of the Free Democratic Party.
He holds a doctorate in Business Management from Erlangen-Nuremberg University. He has also read economics and sociology in Tübingen and Hamburg. Since 1978, he has lectured at Erlangen-Nuremberg University, where he holds an honorary professorship in management, specialising in international management.
[Last updated: 31/11/2008]
Ambassador Dr Sotirios MOUSOURISGovernor for Greece
Ambassador Mousouris is currently the President of the Organization for the Construction of the New Acropolis Museum. He also holds the position of Ambassador-at-Large and Special Envoy of the Greek Government and is a governor of the Open University of Greece.
Ambassador Mousouris was previously the Assistant Secretary General of the United Nations. During his tenure, he served in numerous positions, including Director of the Centre Against Apartheid, Deputy Head of the Department of Political Affairs, and Personal Representative of the Secretary General for Afghanistan and Pakistan.
He was also formerly Deputy Governor of the Hellenic Industrial Bank, where he headed several bank-owned corporations and was on the Board of Directors of the European Investment Bank in Luxembourg.
Ambassador Mousouris received his degrees from the University of Athens and Boston University, and obtained his doctorate from Harvard Business School.
[Last updated: 15/04/09]
Ambassador Dr András BALOGHGovernor for Hungary
Ambassador Balogh is currently the Chief Advisor on international strategy to the former Prime Minister of Hungary, as well as coordinator of the National Development Task Force of the Government of Hungary.
He is also Head of the Modern World History Department at the Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest and Vice-President of the Hungarian Foreign Political Society.
During his diplomatic career, Ambassador Balogh has been based in Thailand, India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, the Maldives, and Afghanistan.
He earned his PhD in Development Studies at the Eötvös Loránd University and his D.Sc. in History at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences. He has written more than 150 studies and books on international relations and modern Asian history.
[Last updated: 22/09/10]
High Commissioner Vijay THAKUR SINGHGovernor for India
Prior to being appointed as High Commissioner of India to Singapore, Ms Vijay Thakur Singh, Indian Foreign Service, has served as Joint Secretary in the National Security Council Secretariat (from September 2012 to June 2013), Joint Secretary to the President of India (August 2007 till August 2012), Deputy Chief of Mission in Embassy of India, Madrid (February 2006 to August 2007), Counsellor in the Embassy of India in Kabul (September 2003 to November 2005), Counsellor in the Permanent Mission of India to the United Nations in New York (June 2000 to July 2003), Director in the UN Division in the Ministry of External Affairs (January 2000 to June 2000), and as Under Secretary, Deputy Secretary and Director in the Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran Division in the Ministry of External Affairs (April 1989 to December 1999). Ms Singh has also served as Third Secretary in Embassy of India, Madrid (December 1986 to March 1989).
Ms Singh who was born on 18 September 1960 is married. Her mother tongue is Hindi; she also speaks Spanish and French. Her educational qualification is an MA in Economics and Bachelor of Laws.
[Last updated: 28/10/13]
Ambassador SOEMADI BrotodiningratGovernor for Indonesia
Ambassador Brotodiningrat was Ambassador of Indonesia to the US, and prior to that he was Ambassador to Japan.
He has also served as Director General for Foreign Economic Relations with the Department of Foreign Affairs in Indonesia, and was Permanent Representative to the United Nations, General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade/World Trade Organization, and other international organisations in Geneva, Switzerland.
Earlier in his career, Ambassador Brotodiningrat was Deputy Director for the Multilateral Economic Cooperation Directorate, and Minister Counsellor of the Indonesian Mission at the United Nations headquarters in New York.
He pursued his studies at the Institut International d’Administration Publique in Paris and also majored in International Relations at the Gajah Mada University in Yogyakarta, Indonesia.
[Last updated: 31/09/2009]
Mr Conor O’CLERYGovernor for Ireland
Born in Belfast and educated at Queen’s University Belfast, Conor O’Clery worked for the Irish Times for over 30 years, most of this as resident foreign correspondent in London, Moscow, Washington, Beijing and New York.
He wrote for the New Republic and Newsweek and broadcast frequently on international affairs on RTE, BBC, NPR and CNN. He was twice Journalist of the Year, in 1987 for his reporting from the Soviet Union, and in 2002 for his account of the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Centre.
He is the author of several books on Irish, American and Russian politics, his most recent being ‘Moscow, December 25, 1991’, an account of the last day of the Soviet Union (2011).
In 2007, he received an honorary doctorate from Queen’s University. He served as Chairman of the Clinton Institute for American Studies at University College Dublin from 2005-2010.
Conor O’Clery lives in Dublin with his Russian-born Armenian wife, Zhanna.
[Last updated: 12/06/2014]
Ambassador Paolo CRUDELEGovernor for Italy
Mr Paolo Crudele joined the Diplomatic Service of Italy in March 1992 with a commercial specialisation. Since then, he has served in various positions at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Italy, including Directorate General for Economic Affairs (1992-1994), Press and Institutional Communication Services (1994), Immigration and Social Affairs Directorate (1994-1996). In 2004, Mr Crudele became the Head of the Secretariat of the Directorate General for the Americas. Apart from his positions in Rome, he also served in different Italian missions abroad: in Guatemala from 1996 to 2000, in Madrid from 2000 to 2002, as Head of the Commercial Office and then Deputy Head of Mission at the Embassy of Italy in Beijing between 2009 and 2013. Since February 2013, he was appointed as Ambassador of Italy to Singapore.
Born in Salerno, Italy in May 1965, Mr Paolo Crudele graduated in Political Science from Salerno University in 1989.
Mr Crudele was awarded “Knight of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Italy” in 2002.
[Last updated: 06/05/2013]
Ambassador Prof Takahiro SHINYOGovernor for Japan
Ambassador/Professor Takahiro SHINYO is the Vice-President of Kwansei Gakuin University. He served as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Japan to the Federal Republic of Germany from 2008 to 2012.
As a career diplomat, his background encompasses a broad range of issues: His assignments include Deputy Director-General of European and Oceanian Affairs Bureau, Counsul-General of Japan in Düsseldorf, Director-General of Multilateral Cooperation Department and Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to the Permanent Mission of Japan to the United Nations.
As a professor, he has taught at Osaka University, both at Faculty of Law and Osaka School of International Public Policy. He is currently responsible for International Strategy at Kwansei Gakuin University.
[Last Updated 08/03/2013]
N.N.Governor for Kazakhstan
The ASEF Governor for Kazakhstan will be appointed in due time.
N.N.Governor for Korea
Mr Viroth SUNDARAGovernor for the Lao PDR
Mr Viroth Sundara is a career diplomat. Currently, he serves as the Director General of Department of Economic Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Lao PDR.
He started his diplomatic career in 1980, working at the International Organisations Department at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Lao PDR. He then worked as a teacher at the Institute of Foreign Affairs of the Foreign Ministry from 1987 to 1994. Later on, Mr Sundara served at various positions at the headquarter as well as overseas: He was Director of Political and Security Division and then Director of Dialogue Partners Division at the ASEAN Department (1997-2001), Deputy Chief of Mission at the Embassy of the Lao PDR in Canberra (2001-2005), Director of Southeast Asia and Pacific Division of the Asia-Pacific and Africa Department (2005-2007), Deputy Director General of the Asia-Pacific and Africa Department (2007-2010), and Minister Counsellor and Deputy Chief of Mission at the Embassy of the Lao PDR in Bangkok (2010-2014).
Mr Viroth Sundara was born in December 1961 in Vientiane, Lao PDR. He studied at the University of Leningrad (USSR) from 1981 to 1987 and obtained his Master of Science degree in Economics. He also joined several professional English and diplomatic training programmes in Australia, Thailand, Malaysia, the United States and China. Mr Sundara is married with three children.
[Last updated: 07/05/2014]
Ms Daiga UPENIECEGovernor for Latvia
Head of Art Museum RIGA BOURSE. Riga, Latvia.
Ms Daiga Upeniece started her career at the Foreign Art Museum of Latvia in 1981, and became the Curator of Graphic and Head of Graphic Department of the Foreign Art Museum in 1985. In 1995, Ms Upeniece was appointed the Director of the Foreign Art Museum. After the merge of Riga’s leading art museum into united institution in 2010, she became the Head of Art Museum RIGA BOURSE and Head of Foreign Art Department of Latvian National Museum of Art.
Ms Daiga Upeniece has been involved in various art projects and important curated exhibitions, including conceptions and organisation of cultural weeks in cooperation with the various Embassies in Asia: she organized art projects in Indonesia (2009, 2001), Japan (2012, 2011), China (2011), South Korea (2011) the Philippines (2011), Pakistan (2012) and Thailand (2013). Ms Upeniece has also published extensively on art (books, catalogues of exhibitions).
Ms Upeniece has been honoured several awards, including the Diploma from Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Latvia in 2012, L’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres from France in 2008, L’Ordre de Leopold II from Belgium in 2007 and Order of Three Stars from Latvia in 2007. She received her Master’s degree from the Latvian Art Academy in 2001 and she commenced her doctoral studies at the Latvian Art Academy in 2009.
Ms Daiga Upeniece is Member of International Council of Museums ICOM, International Network for Curators of Art from the Low Countries CODART,European Etnology Museum Directors Group EEMD, takes part in Asia-Europe Museum Network ASEMUS.
[Last updated: 14/03/2014]
Ambassador Egidijus MEILŪNASGovernor for Lithuania
Mr Egidijus Meilūnas began his diplomatic career by holding positions at the Embassy of Lithuania in Poland from 1992 to 1995. Since then, he has held various positions at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs: he was Deputy Political Director and later Head of the Central Europe Division from 1995 to 1998, Deputy Adviser on national security and foreign policy issues to the President of Lithuania between 1998 and 2002, and Diplomatic Adviser to the President between 2002 and 2003. Mr Meilūnas was appointed as Ambassador-at-Large and Inspector General at Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania in 2003 and as Ambassador of Lithuania to Poland between 2004 and 2010. In 2010, he became Vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs before his appointment as Ambassador to Japan in 2012.
Born in Vilnius in 1964, Mr Meilūnas obtained his diploma in Paediatrics at the Faculty of Medicine of Vilnius University in 1989. He worked at the Surgery Division of the Faculty of Medicine for a year after having obtained the diploma. He also had a Master degree from the Faculty of Law of Vilnius University in 2001. Apart from his positions at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mr Meilūnas also served as Secretary of the Foreign Policy Coordination Council of Lithuania between 1998 and 2003, and as Co-Chairman of Advisory Committee of the Presidents of Lithuania and Poland between 1998 and 2003.
Mr Meilūnas is fluent at English, Polish and Russian.
[Last updated: 10/04/2013]
Dr Jacques F. POOSGovernor for Luxembourg
Jacques Poos was appointed as adviser to the Ministry of Economy in 1959, he worked as a researcher at the Service for Economic and Statistical Studies (STATEC) from 1962 to 1964. His first public office was as member of the Economic and Social Council, in which he held a held a scat in the ranks of the trade-unions delegation, since the establishment of the Council in 1966 until 1972. From 1969 to 1976, he was elected member of the Town Council of the City of Esch-sur-Alzette. In 1974 he won a seat in Parliament and in 1975 became chairman of the Socialist Parliamentary Group (POSL). In July 1976, he was appointed Minister of Finance and National Planning in the Cabinet of Gaston Thorn. As Minister of Finance, Jacques Poos was the instigator of the Societe Nationale de Credit et d’Investissement (SNCI), and one of the architects of the Luxembourgish crisis management model in the steel industry. At European level, he took part in the negotiations of the European Monetary System (EMS), which was launched on 13 March 1979. Following the 1979 elections, Jacques Poos resumed work in the private sector while remaining a Member of Parliament. He was first Executive Director of the Banque Continentale, and then of the Banque Paribas (Luxembourg) S.A. from 1980 to 1984.
From 1984, he continuously acted as Deputy Prime Minister in charge of Foreign Affairs, Foreign Trade and Development, with varying additional portefolios in the different governments. From 1984 to 1989, he was Minister for the Treasury and Minister for Economy, and from 1989 to 1994 Minister for the Armed Forces. In his capacity as Foreign Minister, Jacques Poos was Luxembourg’s negotiator for major European Treaties. In the late 1990s he was, with his 15 years in office, the longest serving Foreign Minister in Europe. He was elected Member of the European Parliament in June 1999. He was also a full member of the Committee for Foreign Affairs, Human Rights, Common Security and Defense Policy and a substitute member of the Committee for Constitutional Affairs.
Since 2000 until 2004, Mr Poos was draftsman of the European Parliament for Cyprus’ accession to the EU. From 2000 to 2010, he was member of the board of the Banque BNP – Paribas (Luxembourg) S.A. In June 2006, he was appointed member of the council of the Luxembourg Central Bank (BCL). Since December 2008, he is an independent non-executive member of the board of Directors of Bank of China (Luxembourg) S.A.
[Last updated: 14/12/2011]
High Commissioner Dato' HUSNI ZAI YaacobGovernor for Malaysia
The biography and photo of Governor Husni Zai Yaacob will be available soon.
Dr Carmen SAMMUTGovernor for Malta
Dr Carmen Sammut is currently the Head of Department of International Relations at the University of Malta. She lectures in international communications, public diplomacy and on issues of culture and gender in international affairs. Her research interests revolve around media and political communication; gender and politics; and media and migration. She holds a PhD in Media and Communications from Goldsmiths College (University of London), and an MA (distinction), PGCE and BA from the University of Malta. She orginially started a career in journalism as a foreign news writer for public broadcasting. For many years she participated in the Media Ethics Commission of the Institute of Journalists and chaired a commission for the renewal of the Code of Ethics. She regularly appears in the media, namely as a commentator and news analyst.
Dr Sammut is also Chairperson of the Il-Majjistral Nature and History Park and a member of the Board of Governors of Valletta2018 Foundation.
[Last updated: 10/10/2014]
Ambassador Banzragch DELGERMAAGovernor for Mongolia
Ms Banzragch Delgermaa is currently Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Mongolia to the Republic of Singapore, as well as a non-resident Ambassador to the Republic of the Philippines and to Brunei Darussalam.
Ambassador B. Delgermaa holds a Honourary Masters degree in Law from the University of Kubani, former Soviet Union and Ph.D. degree in History from the Siberia Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Russian Federation. She studied English at the University of Leeds in the United Kingdom in 1992 and at California State Legislature, USA in 1995.
She began her career as a Researcher at the State General Prosecutor's Office of Mongolia in 1982. After spending three years in the State General Prosecutor's Office, she became a Lecturer at the National University of Mongolia in 1986. Her previous duties also include Researcher at the Academy of Sciences of Mongolia (1989-1990), Advisor to the Standing Committee on Economic Affairs, Parliament of Mongolia (1991-1993), Director of the Academy of Political Education of Mongolia (1993-1996), Member of the Executive Board of the Mongolian National Olympic Committee (1996-2002).
In 1996, she was elected as a Member of Parliament of Mongolia. At the same time she acted as Chair of the Sub-committee on Human Rights and Secretary General of the Democratic Party.
After four years in Parliament, she served as the President of the Board of the Academy of Political Education until 2004. She also served as Advisor for Social Policy to the Prime Minister of Mongolia during 2004-2006.
Ambassador B. Delgermaa is one of the successful woman politicians in Mongolia and she also served as the President of the Democratic Women's Union of the Democratic Party of Mongolia from 2003 to 2010. In 2002 she served as a national advisor of human rights for UNDP in the National Human Rights Commission of Mongolia.
Prior to her appointment to the Republic of Singapore, she served as General Director of the Post-Graduate School of Social Sciences "LIBERTY" in Mongolia.
Ambassador Delgermaa speaks English and Russian.
[Last updated 11/03/2013]
Ambassador Htay AnugGovernor for Myanmar
The biography and photo of Ambassador Htay Anug will be available in due time.
High Commissioner Bernadette CAVANAGHGovernor for New Zealand
Bernadette Cavanagh has been working at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT) since 2000. Prior to joining the Ministry, Bernadette worked for the New Zealand Defence Force and Ministry of Defence in a number of roles, including in the Office of the Chief of Defence Force.
On joining MFAT, Bernadette worked in the Regional Security Unit, Security Policy Division, and Europe Division. From 2004 – 2007 Bernadette was Deputy Head of Mission at the New Zealand Embassy in Moscow. From October 2007 to March 2010 Bernadette was Head of the South East Asia Unit in Wellington. The unit managed New Zealand’s bilateral political, cultural and trade relations with the 10 countries of ASEAN (Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Viet Nam), plus Timor-Leste. From July 2010 – December 2012, Bernadette held the position of Deputy Permanent Representative at the New Zealand Permanent Mission to the United Nations in New York.
Bernadette took up the position of New Zealand High Commissioner to Singapore, with cross accreditation to the Maldives, in January 2013.
[Last updated: 31/10/2013]
Prof Wim.A.L.STOKHOFGovernor for the Netherlands
Prof Stokhof was elected as Chairman of the Board in December 2010 during the ASEF’s 25th Board of Governors Meeting held in Luang Prabang, Laos. He also joined the ASEF's Executive Committee representing the Netherlands.
He is currently the Chair of Cultural and Societal Relations between Indonesia and the Netherlands at the Faculty of Arts, Leiden University. He was appointed Chairman of the Research School of Asian, African and Amerindian Studies, and was a member of the Advisory Committee for co-operation with Indonesia at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the Netherlands. On 9 February 2013, the Universitas Indonesia, Jakarta, bestowed the title of Doctor Honoris Causa on Dr Stokhof.
After completing his postgraduate studies in Linguistics, he went on to teach in a number of universities. He was also the Founding Director of the International Institute for the Study of Islam in the Modern World and the Director of the International Institute for Asian Studies.
He was born in 1941, is married, and enjoys semantics, descriptive linguistics, international relations, Asia and ASEM studies and antique Asian ceramics.
[Last updated: 18/02/13]
Ambassador Tormod ENDRESENGovernor for Norway
The biography and photo of Governor Tormod Endresen will be available soon.
High Commissioner Tanveer Akhtar KHASKHELIGovernor for Pakistan
The biography and photo of Governor Khaskheli will be available soon.
Ambassador Rosario G. MANALOGovernor for the Philippines
Ambassador Manalo is a member of the High Level Task Force for the ASEAN Human Rights Charter and the Chair of the European Studies Program in the Ateneo de Manila University.
She was previously a Presidential advisor and Special Envoy to Latin America. She was also appointed Undersecretary for International Economic Relations for the Department of Foreign Affairs and was variously the Ambassador to France, Portugal, Belgium & Luxembourg, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and the European Economic Community. A Permanent Delegate of the Philippines to UNESCO, she was later appointed Chairwoman for of the UNESCO National Commission of the Philippines.
Ambassador Manalo has held the post of Chairwoman for the UN Committee for the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women and the UN Commission on the Status of Women. She has been lecturing at various universities in the Philippines for over 40 years.
She has two Master of Arts degrees, in International Studies & Diplomacy and Public Administration, and three Bachelor of Arts degrees in Foreign Service, Law, and Science in Jurisprudence.
[Last updated: 17/11/08]
Ambassador Zenon KOSINIAK-KAMYSZGovernor for Poland
The biography and photo of Ambassador Kosiniak-Kamysz will be available soon.
Ambassador Afonso Henriques ABREU DE AZEREDO MALHEIROGovernor for Portugal
Ambassador Afonso Malheiro is currently the Ambassador of Portugal to Singapore.
Before assuming his current post, he was the Director of Asia/Pacific at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, in Lisbon and simultaneously, the Portuguese ASEM Senior Official.
In the course of his diplomatic carrier, he served as Deputy Head of Mission at the Embassy in Jakarta, Counsellor at the Permanent Delegation to NATO and Consul-General in Marseille and the Principality of Monaco.
He was also an international civil servant of the European Commission, in Brussels, Assistant Professor of International Cooperation at Universidade Lusíada, in Lisbon, and Director of the Indian delegation of the Lisbon based Orient Foundation.
Ambassador Afonso Malheiro obtained his Bachelor and Master degrees in Economics from Sorbonne University, Paris.
Ambassador Gheorghe MAGHERUGovernor for Romania
Ambassador Magheru is the Director General for Bilateral Relations at the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. His previous appointments at the ministry include Director General for Eastern Europe and Central Asia (Asia-Pacific, Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America) and Director General for Relations with Central and South-East Europe and Regional Cooperation.
He has also represented Romania at the Council of Europe as the Deputy Permanent Representative, and was the Ambassador of Romania to the Council of Europe as well as Chairman of Ministers’ Deputies of the Committee of Ministers.
A graduate in Language and Literature from the University of Bucharest, Romania, Ambassador Magheru specialises in literary translations and publishes articles on modern history.
[Last updated: 15/04/09]
Ambassador Leonid P. MOISEEVGovernor for the Russian Federation
Prof Leo TAN Wee HinGovernor for Singapore
Prof Tan is the Chairman of the Pacific Science Association Committee on Science Communication and Education.
He attained his Bachelor of Science (Hon.), Graduate Research, and PhD qualifications from the National University of Singapore (NUS). He has been a lecturer at the NUS and was Director of the National Institute of Education.
In the course of his career, he has also been the Chairman of the National Parks Board, the President of the Asian Scientific Academies & Societies, the Director and CEO of the Singapore Science Centre, and the Chairman of the National Youth Achievement Award Council.
Prof Tan has received several Singapore National Day Awards for Public Service and Administration. He was also awarded the Green Leaf Environmental Award and the French National Order of Merit.
[Last updated: 15/04/09]
Ambassador Radomír BOHÁČGovernor for Slovakia
The photo and biography of Governor Boháč will be available soon.
Ambassador Dr Marjan CENCENGovernor for Slovenia
Dr Marjan Cencen graduated from the Faculty of Sociology, Political Sciences and Journalism, received his Master’s Degree from the Faculty of Arts and PhD from the Faculty of Social Sciences of the University of Ljubljana. He was an active athlete and Editor-in-Chief of the student newspaper Razmerja. Between 1983 and 1992, he was a class teacher at the Technical High School in Ljubljana and joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Slovenia in 1992 as Counsellor in the Department for Africa, Asia and Latin America. He was a member of the Slovenian Delegation to the UNGA in 1993 and 1994 and moved to the Department for Multilateral Relations as Deputy Head in 1995. Later that year, he was appointed Counsellor at the Embassy of the Republic of Slovenia in the People’s Republic of China. After his return to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 2000, he was appointed Deputy Head of the Department for North America. In 2003, he was appointed Minister Plenipotentiary and Deputy Head of Mission to the Russian Federation, and in 2005, Ambassador to the People’s Republic of China, also accredited to Vietnam, Mongolia, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, and Thailand. He chaired EU Ambassadors in Beijing during the Slovenian EU Presidency in 2008. After his return to the Ministry in 2009, he was appointed Coordinator for the European Parliament and in February 2012, Director-General for bilateral relations.
Dr Cencen participated in several international seminars and training courses held in Geneva, Vienna, Garmisch P, Washington D.C., and Moscow, and authored several scientific and other articles published in Slovenia, China and the Russian Federation. Between 2002 and 2003, he was a visiting professor at the University of Ljubljana and later also held lectures at the universities of Beida, Fudan, Jilin, Tibet, and at the Beijing Foreign Studies University. He is also the author of six docummentaries on Western Himalayas and East Africa and in 2011, his book titled "International Position of the People’s Republic of China after the End of the Cold War" was published by the Faculty of Social Sciences in Ljubljana. He was awarded the title of "Friendship Ambassador" by the Organizational Board of the Chinese Association of the International Festival of Friendship and Culture.
Dr Cencen speaks English, German and Russian and also understands French, Spanish and Chinese.
He is married and has two children.
[Last updated: 06/11/2012]
Mr Ramón María MORENO GONZÁLEZGovernor for Spain
The biography and photo of Mr Ramón María Moreno González will be available soon.
Ambassador Olof EHRENKRONAGovernor for Sweden
Ambassador Ehrenkrona is currently Ambassador and Senior Advisor to the Swedish Minister for Foreign Affairs, H.E. Mr. Carl Bildt. In the Minister's office, he primarily deals with issues regarding globalisation.
He received his first public assignment in 1978, when he became advisor to the Minister for Economic Affairs. He was previously Head of Policy Planning in the Swedish Prime Minister's Office and served as CEO in a private consulting company.
Ambassador Ehrenkrona was also on the editorial team for the Svenska Dagbladet and has published a number of books about Swedish political and economic history. His academic subjects include History of Ideas and Learning, as well as Political Science and History.
[Last updated: 20/12/2010]
Ambassador Thomas KUPFERGovernor for Switzerland
Ambassador Thomas Kupfer has been Ambassador of Switzerland to Singapore since September 2012. He joined the Diplomatic Service of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs in Bern, Switzerland in 1983. Since then, he has held different positions both in headquarters and overseas, including Swiss Embassy in Washington, USA (1984), Swiss Mission to the European Union in Brussels (1991) and Swiss Embassy in Rome, Italy (1995). Mr Kupfer served as Ambassador for Humanitarian Affairs based in Geneva (2000-2001), Ambassador to Colombia (2004-2008) and Ambassador to Korea (2008-2012). He also served in positions as Deputy Director General of Africa & Middle East Division of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (2001-2003) and Secretary General of the XXVIII International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent in Geneva (2003-2004).
Ambassador Thomas Kupfer was born in Zurich, Switzerland in 1954. He completed his law studies at the University of Zurich in 1978 and obtained a license as an attorney for the Bar of Zurich in 1981. He is married to Mrs Fiorella Kupfer Monteriori. His hobbies include reading and golf.
[Last updated: 10/04/2013]
Ambassador Sawanit KONGSIRIGovernor for Thailand
Ambassador Sawanit Kongsiri is the Assistant Secretary General for External Relations at the Thai Red Cross Society.
His career with the Thai Ministry of Foreign Affairs began in 1966. He has worked in the Office of the Permanent Secretary, and has held Director-General appointments at the Department of Political Affairs, the Department of Economic Affairs, and the Department of Information.
Ambassador Sawanit was also appointed Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to Australia, China, and Vienna before becoming the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs.
[Last updated: 17/11/08]
High Commissioner Antony John PHILLIPSONGovernor for the United Kingdom
Mr Antony Phillipson was appointed British High Commissioner to the Republic of Singapore in 2010. Prior to his current position, High Commissioner Phillipson worked in various positions for the UK’s Civil Service. He began his career in the Department of Trade and Industry in 1993. His posts included Private Secretary and then Principal Private Secretary to the Secretary of State. In 2000 he moved to the British Embassy in Washington DC, USA to serve as the First Secretary of Trade Policy and then as Counsellor (Global Issues) 2002-2004. In 2004, he was appointed Private Secretary to the Prime Minister for Foreign Affairs. In 2007, he moved to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) where he was Head of the Iran Co-ordination Group in the Middle East and North Africa Directorate.
In July 2011, High Commissioner Phillipson succeeded Sir Timothy Lankester as the ASEF Governor for the UK.
High Commissioner Phillipson is married to Julie Phillipson and they have three young boys.
[Last updated on 26/07/11]
Ambassador LE Cong PhungGovernor for Viet Nam
The biography and photo of Ambassador Le will be available in due course.