Head of Singapore’s $230bn state fund Temasek steps down

Ho Ching joined Temasek in 2002 as executive director.

The head of Singapore’s giant $230bn (£167bn) state-owned fund is stepping down after 17 years at the helm. Ho Ching joined Temasek in 2002 as executive director, and was appointed chief executive two years later.

Temasek is ranked among the world’s biggest investors although the fund’s value has dropped during the pandemic. Ms Ho, the wife of Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, will be succeeded by Cambridge-educated lawyer Dilhan Pillay Sandrasegara.

Temasek has stepped up investing abroad under Ms Ho, and in September said that its holdings in China surpassed its home market of Singapore for the first time.

It has made big gains from investing in China’s e-commerce giant Alibaba, founded by Jack Ma. Other key holdings include Singapore’s DBS banking group, China Construction Bank and Standard Chartered.

Last fiscal year, Temasek posted its worst results since 2016 as economies slowed due to the virus pandemic. Its net portfolio value fell to $230bn in the year ended March, from $235bn a year earlier.

Ho Ching is the wife of Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.
Ho Ching is the wife of Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.

Ms Ho started her career as an engineer and was the president and chief executive of Singapore Technologies Group prior to joining Temasek.

Her successor Mr Pillay joined Temasek in 2010 and has held various leadership roles including overseeing the fund’s US and Americas market teams.

In 2019 he was appointed chief executive of Temasek International, the wholly-owned management and investment arm of Temasek Holdings.

Mr Pillay will keep this position when the changes take effect on 1 October, the company said in a statement on Tuesday.

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