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Wed, May 05


Online webinar

Climate and Sustainability Ambitions of our Trading Partners

Part III of CGM's Primer on Climate Governance

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Climate and Sustainability Ambitions of our Trading Partners
Climate and Sustainability Ambitions of our Trading Partners

Time & Location

May 05, 2021, 12:30 PM – 2:10 PM GMT+8

Online webinar


About the event


Climate and sustainability ambitions of our trading partners will affect many Malaysian businesses where trade is almost 70% of our GDP, most notably in the rubber glove industry and palm oil sector.

Many countries are pushing ahead with climate ambitions and as a consequence, proposing to penalise imports. The European Union, for example which already has a binding target to cut greenhouse gases by at least 40% by 2030 from 1990 levels, wants to become climate-neutral by mid-century. The EU wants to ensure that imported goods face the same costs of emissions as European companies. A carbon border tax would penalize dirty imports from countries that lag behind in fighting climate change. We believe that other countries will follow suit. Malaysian companies need to be forewarned and start reducing their carbon footprint or may find themselves left out of world trade.

In this webinar, we take the opportunity of listening directly to our trading partners to understand their thought processes.

 Agenda (100 min) 

12:30pm: Welcome by Dr Kalanithi Nesaretnam, co-founder of Climate Governance Malaysia (3-5 min)

12:35pm: Keynote Address by YB Dato’ Sri Mustapa Mohamed, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Economy) (10 min)

12:45pm Panel discussion: Climate Ambitions of Selected Trading Partners 

(8-10 min from each contributor followed by panel discussion) (80 min)


HE Michalis Rokas, Ambassador of European Union

HE Hiroshi Oka, Ambassador of Japan

Mr. David Thomas, Deputy High Commissioner of United Kingdom

HE Gunn Jorid Roset, Ambassador of Norway

HE Cristiano Maggipinto, Ambassador of Italy

The panel discussion will be moderated by Dr. Firas Raad (World Bank Country Manager).

2:08pm: Closing note and thank you by CGM.

About the Contributors

YB Dato’ Sri Mustapa Mohamed, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department in charge of economy since March 2020, where he oversees the overall medium- and long-term socioeconomic development planning of the nation. He is also chairman of the parliament of Malaysia’s special select committee on budget; chairman of Talent Corporation, an agency under the Ministry of Human Resources (MOHR) that drives Malaysia’s talent strategy towards becoming a dynamic talent hub; and Chairman of Teraju, a strategic unit to spearhead progress through meaningful, resilient and sustainable Bumiputera economic participation.

Born in 1950, Dato’ Sri Mustapa Mohamed holds a first-class honours degree in economics from the University of Melbourne and a Masters degree in economic development from Boston University. He was first elected as a member of Parliament in 1995. He has since held a number of senior positions in the Malaysian government, including Minister of International Trade and Industry, Minister of Agriculture and Agro-industry, Minister of Higher Education, Minister of Entrepreneur Development, Deputy Finance Minister, and Executive Director at the National Economic Action Council.

HE Michalis Rokas is the Ambassador and Head of the European Union Delegation to Malaysia, with 26 years experience in the field of foreign affairs having joined the European Commission External Relations Directorate General in 1994. His prior postings include Chargé d’Affaires a.i. and Head of EU Delegation to New Zealand, First secretary of the European Commission’s Office in Hong Kong and Macau, Head of the Support to Delegations Division at the European External Action Service (EEAS) and Deputy and Head of the China, Hong Kong, Macao, Taiwan and Mongolia Division at the EEAS. Ambassador Rokas holds a bachelor degree in Economics and a postgraduate degree in European Economics. Mr Rokas’ mother tongue is Greek and he speaks English, French and German.

HE Hiroshi Oka is the Ambassador of Japan to Malaysia since November 2019. He has nearly 40 years of experience in diplomatic activities having joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan in 1982. Prior to Malaysia, Ambassador OKA also served as Ambassador of Japan to Turkey, Minister of the Embassy of Japan in the United Kingdom and Saudi Arabic. He has served in a range of bureaus and departments at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Japan. He was the Director General of Middle Eastern and African Affairs Bureau in 2017 as well as Director General of Intelligence Analysis Service in 2014. Ambassador OKA graduated from the Faculty of Law of the University of Tokyo in 1982. He speaks Japanese, English and Arabic.

HE Cristiano Maggipinto is the Ambassador of Italy to Malaysia from 2017.  He graduated in Political Sciences from the University of Florence in 1987; joined the Diplomatic Service in 1989. He was awarded the ‘Knight of the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic” (Cavaliere Ufficiale dell’Ordine al Merito della Repubblica) in 2006. He was Counsellor for Emigration and Social Affairs to the Italian Embassy in Berlin, Germany – following the transfer of the Mission from Bonn to Berlin, 3rd November 1999; Following this he was Head of the Secretariat of the Directorate General for Italians Abroad and Migration Policies, 15th January 2001; He was appointed  as General Consul, Houston, USA, 30th January 2006; He was promoted to Minister Plenipotentiary, 2nd January 2011 and was the Directorate General for Development Cooperation, Rome, 20th December 2013 .

HE Gunn Jorid Roset is the Ambassador of Norway to Malaysia. She obtained her degree in political science at the University of Oslo in 1997. She started her career at the Norwegian Embassy and her first overseas posting was as First Secretary and Deputy Head of Mission at the Royal Norwegian Embassy in Riga and later in Pretoria. She has served in various capacities at the Norwegian Embassy in Oslo from 2009-2016.

Mr David Thomas is the Deputy British High Commissioner to Malaysia, having joined the diplomatic service in 1996. He served in various capacities, including stints in 4 overseas posting, which include Nigeria, South Africa and USA. Malaysia is his fifth overseas posting. Mr Thomas has passionately worked in the environmental and climate change space as ODA programme lead as well as heading the climate and energy team in British Embassy Washington. In Malaysia, he dedicates ample time to engage on these matters with local interlocutors. Mr Thomas was a police officer for 6 years before joining the foreign service.

Dr. Firas Raad is the World Bank Country Manager for Malaysia overseeing the work of its Inclusive Growth and Sustainable Finance Hub in Kuala Lumpur. He has 27 years of experience as a development and health policy professional with the World Bank, the United Nations and the Jordanian Government. In previous positions, he served as World Bank Country Manager for Kuwait, Head of Mission for the Office of the Quartet Representative in East Jerusalem (while on secondment from the World Bank), and a World Bank Human Development Coordinator for the GCC Countries and Senior Health Specialist.  He has a Doctorate in International Health Policy and Economics from the Harvard School of Public Health; Master’s Degree in International Relations (with a focus on Middle Eastern Studies) from the School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) and Bachelor’s Degree in Economics from Johns Hopkins University. He is Jordanian national, speaks Arabic and English, and is married with three children.

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