Mar 10, 2021 17:00

Surbana Jurong’s Gareth Wong joins World Economic Forum’s 2021 Young Global Leaders programme

Mr Wong is one of two Singaporeans selected for the eminent YGL Forum coinciding with the World Economic Forum’s meeting in Singapore taking place in August. 

Gareth Wong WEF YGL

Singapore, 10 March 2021 – Surbana Jurong Group is pleased to announce that its employee Mr Gareth Wong has been selected to join the World Economic Forum (WEF)’s cohort of Young Global Leaders (YGLs) for 2021. Gareth is Chief Executive Officer of Mitbana Pte. Ltd, the group’s joint venture fund management company with Mitsubishi Corporation, Japan’s leading trading house.

Every year, WEF selects some of the world’s most promising academics, activists, entrepreneurs, executives and politicians under the age of 40 to join its eminent Forum of YGL. Nominated from around the world, potential candidates are assessed based on a rigorous selection criterion. They must have demonstrated high quality leadership, outstanding professional work experience and a commitment to serving the global community. Selected YGLs undergo a five-year personalised leadership programme and will have the opportunity to interact with the Forum’s global stakeholders. The WEF Special Annual Meeting 2021 will convene in Singapore on 17-20 August. This is the second time the annual meeting will be held outside of Switzerland since it began in 1971, and the first time it will be held in Asia.

To date, the YGL Forum has a membership of over 1,400 members and alumni including prominent personalities such as the Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern, Alibaba Founder Jack Ma, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Grab Co-Founder Tan Hooi Ling and CNN anchor Anderson Cooper. Representing more than 120 nationalities, YGLs are united by the belief that the urgent problems of today present an opportunity to forge a better future across sectors, generations and borders.

This year, the Forum has selected 112 YGLs from across the world, of which three are based in Singapore.

Speaking after his appointment, Gareth said: “I’m deeply honoured and tremendously excited to be joining the Forum’s 2021 Class of YGLs. YGLs play an integral role in supporting the Forum’s vision to create a more sustainable future for the global community. I look forward to contributing my experience and ideas, as well as learning from my counterparts from across the globe. By harnessing our collective diverse resources, I believe we can make a positive change in our respective fields.”

As CEO of Mitbana, Gareth is responsible for a deployable capital base of US$500 million aimed at catalysing and crowding in third-party institutional capital to develop Townships & Transit-Oriented Developments (TODs) in ASEAN and South Asia. In September last year, Mitbana announced that it had embarked on a greenfield venture with leading Indonesian developer Sinar Mas Land to transform over 100 hectares of land in its flagship town Bumi Serpong Damai (BSD) City, in Greater Jakarta, into smart and sustainable transit-oriented developments.

“Gareth is a dynamic leader who is a force of change wherever he goes. His ideas, coupled with determined action, created the foundation for Mitbana’s establishment and foray into Indonesia,” said Mr Chong Lit Cheong, Chairman of Mitbana. “I am excited to see Gareth plant Mitbana’s flag on the global arena and advance his passion for smart, sustainable developments on a larger platform.”

Mr Naoshi Ogikubo, Division Chief Operating Officer in Mitsubishi Corporation’s Urban Development Group and a Board Director of Mitbana said: “Mitbana is extremely proud of Gareth’s appointment to World Economic Forum’s 2021 Class of YGLs. I’d like to congratulate Gareth on this outstanding achievement and the extraordinary opportunities it offers.”

A wholly owned subsidiary of Temasek, Surbana Jurong Group is today one of Asia’s leading urban, infrastructure and managed services consultancy firms. The group is also supporting Singapore’s efforts to prepare for Forum’s Annual Meetings later this year, and recently played an instrumental role in the construction of Connect@Changi, the world’s first purpose-built short-stay facility that allows business travellers to have meetings in Singapore without the need for quarantine on arrival.

Since joining Surbana Jurong in 2013, Gareth has honed deep expertise in driving urban developments in emerging markets. Gareth was the Group’s youngest-appointed General Manager assigned to establish Surbana Jurong’s business in Myanmar, which he grew from 2014 to 2016. Gareth has also served in various senior roles in the group and is credited for having originated and spearheaded key strategic initiatives like Mitbana and SJ Capital, Surbana Jurong’s seed investment arm.

Gareth is also a member of the World Cities Summit (WCS) Young Leaders programme organised by the Centre for Liveable Cities, Singapore. Held biennially, the WCS is platform for government leaders and industry experts to address liveable and sustainable city challenges and to collaborate on integrated urban solutions.

Gareth holds a MSc. in Political Science from Columbia University in the City of New York and bachelor’s degree in Economics (First Class Hons, Dean’s List) from University College London.

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