Asia Internet Coalition (AIC) Webinar Series

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COVID-19 has already spread to 213 countries and territories, disrupting value chains, impeding worker mobility, increasing production costs, and weakening demand. The OECD now forecasts a 1.5-percentage-point decline in global GDP growth this year, though the specifics depend on how long the outbreak lasts.

The World Health Organization said May 20 it had registered a new daily record number of COVID-19 cases the day before at 106,662 cases in a single day. Over 4.9 million cases of the coronavirus have been registered in total since the outbreak first emerged in China last December.

International trade is at a standstill. Existing and new trade agreements are under great strain in an environment which was already complicated by the US-China trade war. India has recently pulled out of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) and Thailand has recently decided to pull their application for the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership. Countries around the world will face a challenging fiscal environment as they roll out oversized stimulus packages to keep their economies afloat.

Trade patterns will also change as supply chains shift and countries try to nationalize their firms or reshore more production. In order to increase the nation’s post-pandemic tax base, several developing economies such as India, Indonesia and the Philippines are looking towards taxing the digital economy amidst this crisis. In light of these unprecedented developments and challenges, what will the future of global trade look like?

AIC would cordially like to invite you to an upcoming webinar that will provide a comprehensive overview of how the trade environment will look in a post-COVID-19 world. Dr Deborah Elms, Executive Director of the Asian Trade Centre, will share her knowledge and views on what the world of trade will look like in the ‘new normal’. AIC Managing Director, Jeff Paine, will moderate the session.

Wednesday, 10 June 2020, 2 pm - 3 pm (+8GMT)

2:00 - 2:10 pm: Welcome & Introductions - Jeff Paine, Managing Director, Asia Internet Coalition (AIC)

2:10 - 2:40 pm: Overview of trade in the post-COVID-19 environment – Dr Deborah Elms, Asia Trade Centre
2:40 - 3:00 pm: Q&A session, moderated by Jeff Paine

Teams link will be sent to your email nearing to date of the event.

About the Speakers

Dr Deborah Kay Elms
Executive Director of the Asian Trade Centre



Deborah Elms is the Executive Director of the Asian Trade Centre (ATC) in Singapore. She is also President of the Advisory Board of the Asia Business Trade Association (ABTA) and the Board Director of the Asian Trade Centre Foundation (ATCF).

Dr. Elms sits on the International Technical Advisory Committee of the Global Trade Professionals Alliance and is Chair of the Working Group on Trade Policy and Law.  She is on the board of the Trade and Investment Negotiation Adviser (TINA) at the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia Pacific (UNESCAP).  She is a member of the World Economic Forum’s Trade and Investment Council for 2018-2020.

Prior to founding ATC/ATCF and the ABTA, she was head of the Temasek Foundation Centre for Trade & Negotiations (TFCTN) and Senior fellow of International Political Economy at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.

Dr. Elms received a PhD in political science from the University of Washington, a MA in International Relations from the University of Southern California, and bachelor’s degrees from Boston University.

She is the author of numerous articles, editor of several books, and publishes the weekly Talking Trade Blog at  Dr. Elms regularly appears on television and in major newspapers and magazines around the world to comment on trade and economic issues.

Jeff Paine 
Managing Director of Asia Internet Coalition (AIC)


Jeff is a Singapore-based professional with more than 25 years’ experience at leading multinational corporations including Visa, Microsoft, Reuters and the Royal Bank of Canada.  He has been based in Singapore for more than 20 years and has held regional roles covering Southeast Asia for more than twelve years.   In 2014, he established PS-engage, his own government relations consulting firm.  PS-engage works with leading IT, e-commerce, finance and payment companies to provide guidance on constructive engagement with governments and to assist with regulatory and policy work.   He is also currently the Managing Director of the Asia Internet Coalition, a leading industry body that promotes smart regulatory reforms for the digital economy.   Jeff is also a Co-Chair of the Financial Services Committee at the American Chamber of Commerce in Singapore and a member of the Tax Feedback Panel at the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS).

Jeff has a B.A. in Economics from the University of Western Ontario in Canada and an MBA in Finance from Rutgers University in the U.S.A.  He also attended  the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University where he has completed a diploma program on Innovations in Governance.

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