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The Insight Bureau

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A leading economist who offers independent, insightful analysis of the dynamics of the economies of China, Southeast Asia and the Middle East regions.

Based in Hong Kong, Ben is the Founder and Managing Director of Silk Road Associates, a strategy consulting company that provides advisory services on China and the Middle East. He has built up a strong reputation as a commentator on China and Southeast Asia; he publishes China Insider, a monthly publication providing independent analysis of China's economy and also Silk Road Economy, a quarterly publication examining economic developments from China, to India, to Turkey.

Ben was recently appointed to become part of a Foreign Experts Committee advising China's central leadership on the "Belt and Road initiative", under the auspices of the State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs (SAFEA). He has been involved in meetings in Beijing to discuss with senior officials ways to execute the initiative successfully, and how to engage foreign companies.

His previous work in Asia was as Chief China Economist at the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) and prior to this, Senior China Economist at JPMorgan. Ben has spent the past 10 years in Hong Kong but has also lived in Beirut, Damascus and Beijing.

His editorial writings have appeared across the international media, including the Financial Times, Wall Street Journal, International Herald Tribune and Foreign Affairs, among many others. He appears regularly on Bloomberg and CNBC.

He is the author of The New Silk Road: How a Rising Arab World is Turning Away from the West and Rediscovering China (revised edition published in February 2011.) and The Rise of the New East, looking at strategies for companies to understand the complexities of doing business in the Asia region (published in June 2014.) Ben is a frequent speaker at major international business conferences, investment forums, client events and executive briefings in nearly a dozen countries. Recent engagements include events arranged by the IMF, Council on Foreign Relations, Pacific Pension Institute, HSBC, Invesco, KPMG, Latham & Watkins, RBS and many others. He speaks on a range of topics including China’s economy, ASEAN, Consumer markets and the Middle East’s economies.

"Ben is a thorough and totally involved observer of matters Eastern with an ability to articulate his thoughts clearly both orally and, as in this case, in a totally unstuffy, readable and informative book. A tireless traveler with an enquiring economist's mind, he shines because of his ability to cross cultural and language barriers with an ease I have yet to find in others."
David Eldon, former Chairman of HSBC Asia Pacific

"We were thrilled with the value which Ben brought to our meeting. His materials and presentation were extremely relevant and right on point. He had a style and presentation which was appropriate to and comfortable for our audience. He left us with a lot to think about."
Bemis Associates


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