UAESBC is honored to have His Excellency Dr Mohamed Omar Abdulla Balfaqeeh, the former UAE Ambassador to Singapore, and the Honourable Mr Lee Yi Shyan, Executive Advisor to the Chairman’s Office, OUE Limited and former Singapore Senior Minister for Trade & Industry, as the business council’s distinguished patrons. In June 2019, the UAE government appointed His Excellency Muhammad Ali Musabbeh Al Nuaimi, Chairman of the RAK Chamber to be our UAE-based Patron. The Council also has the support of Singapore Ambassador to the UAE, His Excellency Kamal Vaswani who has also provided his message below.
His Excellency Dr Mohamed Omar Abdulla Balfaqeeh
Prior to his current appointment, Dr Mohamed Omar Abdulla Balfaqeeh was the Adviser to the Chairman of the Department of Economic Development (DED) in Abu Dhabi. He had also served as the Undersecretary of the DED from March 2007 to June 2015, and as the Director General of the Abu Dhabi Chamber of Commerce and Industry from May 1997 to March 2007.
He has extensive experience in the areas of law, banking and economic development. Dr Mohamed served as a Member of the Board of Directors of several government and semi-government entities.
He was awarded his Doctor of Philosophy from the University of Northampton in 2013.
Dr Mohamed Omar Abdulla Balfaqeeh’s message:
I am delighted with the establishment of the UAE Singapore Business Council and am honoured to be its Patron. The establishment of UAESBC is a milestone in the commercial and business linkages between the two countries. The trade and investment flows between UAE and Singapore have grown progressively over the years and I expect the UAESBC to play a pivotal role in enhancing the linkages between the two countries.
Mr Lee Yi Shyan
Mr Lee is a former Member of Parliament. He chairs the board of Business China. He is the Executive Advisor to Chairman’s office, OUE and chairs the board of OUE Hospitality Trust, OUE-Lippo Healthcare, OUE Corp (USA).
Mr Lee is also the Chairman of Intercontinental Exchange Singapore. He is a Council Member for Singapore-Jiangsu Cooperation Council and Singapore-Shandong Economic & Trade Council and Patron for UAE Singapore Business Council. Mr Lee also advises Keppel Corporation Limited.
Previously, between 2006 to 2015, Mr Lee served in various capacities of Singapore government including as Senior Minister of State for Ministry of Trade & Industry, Ministry of National Development, Ministry of Manpower.
He chaired a number of bilateral high-level councils with China, Middle East, Russia and Africa. Specifically, he co-chaired the Singapore-Abu Dhabi Joint Forum with his counterpart Mr Khaldoon Khalifa Al Mubarak of Mubadala for 8 years. Prior to 2006, Mr Lee was CEO of International Enterprise Singapore, Deputy CEO of SPRING and held senior operational and staff positions in EDB. He worked in Suzhou Industrial Park, China (1997-1998) as Deputy CEO of China-Singapore Suzhou Development Pte Ltd. Mr Lee was honored with Distinguished Alumni Award by the Centre for Creative Leadership (Greensboro, NC) in 2009, and Distinguished Engineering Alumni Award by the Faculty of Engineering, National University of Singapore in 2013.
Mr Lee graduated from NUS in 1986 and has completed executive programs at Harvard Business School (1997) and Tsinghua University (2001).
Mr Lee Yi Shyan’s message:
I am honoured to be the Patron for the UAE Singapore Business Council. The inauguration of the Council reflects the growing economic cooperation between UAE and Singapore, and the larger regions they represent. I am privileged to have played a role in establishing the business connectivity between UAE and Singapore when I was with the Ministry of Trade and Industry. I am glad to see how the connectivity has flourished. The establishment of UAESBC, being a ground up effort by the private sector, testifies to the importance our business sectors attach to our mutual connectivity, and our confidence in what it can grow to be in the future between the GCC and our region.
My heartiest congratulations.
His Excellency Mohamed Ali Musabbeh Al Nuaimi (UAE-based Patron)
HE Mohamed Al Nuaimi, Chairman of Ras Al Khaimah (RAK) Chamber, holds an MBA from USA, is one of the UAE’s prominent banking and finance executives with over 30 years’ experience in banking and finance.
A committed Emirati, HE Al Nuaimi maintains his links to the community by serving as a board member on many scientific and social organizations. These include the UAE Ministry of Health Fund and Ex-Chairman of Emirates Institute for Banking and Financial Studies.
He has served as a board member of Emirates sports club, and was a former member of the UAE Anti-Money Laundering Committee and the UAE Nationalization Committee.
HE Al Nuaimi served as a committee member of the Central Bank of the UAE, as well as of several federal ministers and local departments.
He is also a distinguished public speaker, providing valuable input to seminars and conferences local and internationally.
His extensive professional experience in the Financial Sector being ex-Member of the Management of RAK Bank and at the National Bank of Dubai (NBD), Al Nuaimi played a key role in the creation of Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC). He was a member of the research team that participated in presenting the requirements for DIFC’s rules and regulations, based on international standards.
HE Al Nuaimi also participated in establishing Dar Al Takaful and Chaired its Board which provides Islamic insurances products and services, and served as a Chairman for first 3 years, and establishing Mawarid Finance, the first independent Sharia’a complaint finance company, where he still serving as managing Directors and CEO as well as Board Member of Commercial Bank International and Chairman of Mawarid Technology.
His Excellency Mohamed Ali Al Nuaimi’s message:
I am very pleased to learn about the establishment of the UAESBC which will definitely add value in supporting the great relationship already exists between UAE and Singapore, where I believe UAESBC will play a big role in tightening and increasing the trade connectivity between the two countries.
I am also honored to be its patron and to have the chance to contribute in growing and enhancing its mission for the prosperity of both business communities and both countries.
His Excellency Kamal R Vaswani,
Ambassador of the Republic of Singapore to the United Arab Emirates
Mr Kamal R Vaswani was posted as Singapore’s Ambassador to the United Arab Emirates in February 2020.
Prior to his posting, Mr Vaswani was Director-General of the Europe Directorate and concurrently Vice Dean (Academic) of the Diplomatic Academy from 2015 to 2019.
Mr Vaswani joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1995. His first overseas assignment was as First Secretary at the Singapore High Commission in Kuala Lumpur from 1998 to 2002. Mr Vaswani was subsequently posted as Counsellor in the Singapore Embassy in Jakarta from 2004 to 2008, and Deputy Permanent Representative in the Singapore Permanent Mission to ASEAN from 2008 to 2009.
At the Ministry’s headquarters, Mr Vaswani has also served as Assistant Director, Deputy Director, and Deputy Director-General in the Southeast Asia Directorate.
Mr Vaswani graduated from the National University of Singapore with a Bachelor of Business Administration (Honours) in 1995. He obtained a Masters in International Public Policy from the School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University in 2003, on a Singapore Government Scholarship.
Mr Vaswani was awarded the Commendation Medal in 2005. He is married to Ms Amanda Douglas and they have a daughter.
His Excellency Kamal R Vaswani's Message
Since its establishment in 2018, the UAE Singapore Business Council (UAESBC) has played an active and important role in promoting closer business ties between the two countries. I was privileged to meet the members of the Council in Singapore prior to taking up post. It is important that we continue to encourage business collaborations even as we both deal with the challenges of COVID-19. In this regard, I was delighted to see that the UAESBC has continued to keep up its activities virtually. I am confident that the UAESBC will continue to contribute to strengthening our economic ties and the warm and friendly relations between Singapore and the UAE.