Jul 23, 2013

    Lim Boon Heng is next Temasek chairman

    SINGAPORE'S Temasek Holdings has named Mr Lim Boon Heng as its next chairman, giving the non-executive role to a former Cabinet minister as the firm's long-serving chairman retires next month.

    Mr Lim joined Temasek's board a year ago and will replace Mr S. Dhanabalan, who will retire next Thursday. Mr Dhanabalan, 75, has held the chair for 17 years.

    Temasek, a major global investment company with stakes in Standard Chartered Bank and large Chinese banks, reported an 8.6 per cent rise in its portfolio size to a record S$215 billion in its last financial year - ended in March - helped by a rebound in Asian shares.

    Mr Dhanabalan, a former chairman of Singapore Airlines and of DBS Group Holdings, had expressed his desire to retire for some time, people familiar with the matter said.

    Mr Lim, 65, was a minister from 1993 to 2011, and is a former chairman of the People's Action Party.

    Mr Lim, formerly a unionist with the National Trades Union Congress (NTUC), was described as "friendly and unassuming" by Mr Gerry de Silva, head of group corporate affairs at Hong Leong Group, who spoke in a personal capacity.

    "He was very passionate about creating jobs and improving the lot of workers in his NTUC days, and worked hard for an active ageing population," said Mr de Silva. "He remains very active in church today."