Director of AlphaBeta Advisory
Dr. Fraser Thompson is Managing Director and co-founder of AlphaBeta, an economic strategy firm with headquarters in Singapore, which aims to integrate economics and strategy to support business and government decision-making. Fraser has led a variety of strategic planning projects across Asia, including in sustainability, digital technologies, and the public sector.
Fraser previously led McKinsey Global Institute (MGI), the economic research arm of McKinsey, in Southeast Asia, and was also a consultant with McKinsey for 9 years, Prior to joining McKinsey, Fraser worked at The World Bank and as an economics tutor at Oxford University. Fraser also served as the Inaugural President of the Australian Chamber of Commerce in ASEAN a board member of AustCham Singapore.
Fraser received a Doctorate and Masters in Economics from the University of Oxford, where he studied as a Rhodes Scholar
Head of Unit for International Relations
Harvey Rouse is currently serving as the Head of Unit of International Relations of DG MOVE in the European Commission. His primary role is to deepen transport relations between the EU and the rest of the world.
He is a Public Diplomacy Professional possessing over 25 years' of experience in both private and public sectors.
Harvey has extensive multicultural and diplomatic experience and knowledge in Asia and East Africa having worked in three Delegations of the EU. He was the Head of Trade and Economic Section in Jakarta leading trade relations and negotiations on the ground with Indonesia and Brunei Darussalam as well as ASEAN. In addition, he served as the Head of Political and Trade Section in Kenya and Uganda.
During his time in Delegations, but also through his earlier work in DG TRADE where he headed up the bilateral relations with Turkey and contributing to the Communication Strategy of DG TRADE, Harvey also gained widespread experience in trade policy, advocacy and negotiations as well as in relationship building.
Before entering the European Commission, Harvey worked in the private sector, most notably for ten years as the Vice President for EU Affairs and Trade Policy and the European Spokesman of the Motion Picture Association, which represents the interests of the seven Hollywood studios, in a PR Company and a European law firm.
Former European Coordinator for Railways
Former European Coordinator for ERTMS (European Rail Traffic Management System) at the European Commission.
Former CEO of the Belgian National Railway Company (SNCB) and former Chairman of CER (The Community of European Railway and Infrastructure Companies).
He completed his studies civil engineer in electro-mechanics at the K.U. Leuven (Belgium), obtained a degree in production management (Ghent University) and a Master in Business Administration at Cornell University (USA).
He fluently speaks French, Dutch, English, Italian and German.
Seth is the Executive Director of Infrastructure Asia, which is a project facilitation office under the Singapore government.
Set up by Enterprise Singapore and the Monetary Authority of Singapore, the office aims to harness the network and collective capabilities of public sector agencies and private sector firms, and partner stakeholders across the region to meet Asia’s infrastructure needs.
Prior to his role as head of the Infrastructure Asia office, he has helmed leadership roles in DBS Bank, BNP Paribas, Standard Bank, and Babcock & Brown, and was based overseas in China, Australia, Hong Kong. Over his 23 years involvement in the infrastructure sector, he has worked on various opportunities across various infrastructure sub-segments.
Ambassador Attached to Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Thailand
Mr. Nikorndej Balankura was appointed Ambassador Attached to the Ministry in October 2019. His responsibility involves overlooking Mekong sub-regional cooperation frameworks and related issues. He was also tasked as Senior Official (SOM) of key sub-regional frameworks namely; ACMECS, MGC, MJ, MUSP, MK and MLC.
Prior to that, he was Deputy Director General of the Department of International Economic Affairs where he played active role in revitalizing sub-regional cooperation frameworks to become more dynamic and sustainable, emphasizing “Connectivity” as a prioritized area of cooperation since he believes that multidimensional connectivity is a foundation on which Mekong sub-region can build its new regional branding and regain its competitive identity.
In addition, Mr. Nikorndej was also served at Office of the Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Permanent Mission of Thailand to United Nations Office, Geneva, Department of Information and Royal Thai Embassy in Rabat. His past professional experience involves multilateralism, regionalism, economic diplomacy and public diplomacy/nation branding.
Mr. Nikorndej holds a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations from Chulalongkorn University, Thailand and a Master of Arts in International Political Economy from American University, Washington DC.
Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations (ICRIER)
Dr. Arpita Mukherjee is a Professor at ICRIER. She has over 25 years of experience in policy-oriented research, working closely with the government in India and policymakers in the European Commission and its member states, United States (US), Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and in East Asian countries. She has conducted studies for international organizations, Indian industry associations, non-government organisations and companies.
Her areas of expertise include trade and investment; trade agreements; services; special economic zones; economic corridors; retail and food supply chain; start-ups, entrepreneurs; e-commerce and cross-border labour mobility. She specialises in sector and product-specific market trends, go-to market strategy, and government policies.
Dr Mukherjee has a PhD in Economics from the University of Portsmouth, UK, and prior to joining ICRIER she worked with the UK-based think tank - Policy Studies Institute and taught at the University of Portsmouth. She has over 80 publications including national and international referred journals, books and book chapters and government reports. Dr. Mukherjee is a member of various government committees and policy panels and is in the editorial board of 10 journals. She has presented her work in various conferences and seminar and is in the advisory board of industry associations and non-government organisations. She is a regular contributor to newspapers and magazines.
Practice Manager for Transport for
South East Asia and Pacific
Almud is the World Bank's Practice Manager for Transport in Southeast Asia and the Pacific. Prior to that she was 9 years in the World Bank’s Global Water Practice as Regional Team Leader for the Water and Sanitation Program in East Asia and South Asia and Lead Water and Sanitation Specialist. Before joining the World Bank, Ms. Weitz held project task management positions at the Asian Development Bank in Manila and in Jakarta over 8 years. She started her career as a Policy Analyst with the United Nations Development Programme in New York where she worked for 4 years. She is a German and Italian national and holds a Masters in Economics from Free University of Berlin in Germany.