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Temasek CEO: Govt Not Involved in Succession Plan

29 Jul 2009

MR PATRICK Low ('Go local in hunt for CEO', Friday) says he is puzzled that the Government should have 'stumbled' in managing succession planning in Temasek Holdings.

The Government is a shareholder of Temasek. It does not manage succession planning for Temasek staff, including the CEO. That is, and has been, the responsibility of Temasek and its board.

The Government is, however, satisfied that Temasek has in place a disciplined system of succession planning and selection process for its senior management, and an open and meritocratic approach to recruiting the best talent for the organisation. The appointment of its CEO is not a political decision, but a decision based on merit.

Mr Low also raises the question of whether an expatriate can helm Temasek. The Board of Temasek is controlled by Singaporeans, and must remain so. Whether the CEO is local or foreign must remain a decision for the board to make, based on who the best candidate is. To restrict the pool of talent available to Temasek or politicise the process will only disadvantage the organisation, and make it harder for Temasek to keep its focus on 'the generation and prudent management of Singapore's wealth', in Mr Low's words.