Chamber News

The British Malaysian Chamber of Commerce Welcomes Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Sir Dr. Jeffrey Cheah as Co-Patron

KUALA LUMPUR, 6 June 2024 – The British Malaysian Chamber of Commerce (BMCC) is proud to announce the appointment of Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Sir Dr. Jeffrey Cheah KBE AO as its new Co-Patron. This esteemed appointment reflects the Chamber’s commitment to strengthening bilateral trade relations and fostering economic growth between the United Kingdom and Malaysia.

Tan Sri Dato Seri’ Sir Dr. Jeffrey Cheah KBE AO (“Tan Sri Sir Dr. Jeffrey Cheah”) is a renowned entrepreneur and philanthropist. He is the founder and chairman of Sunway Group, one of Southeast Asia’s leading conglomerates with core interests in real estate, education, healthcare, retail, leisure and hospitality; and the founder and trustee of the Jeffrey Cheah Foundation, a not-for-profit entity and the largest of its kind in Malaysia advancing education. Under his visionary leadership, Sunway Group has grown to become a prominent force in the Malaysian economy and a key player on the global stage. Tan Sri Sir Dr. Jeffrey Cheah was recently conferred the honorary Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (KBE) by His Majesty King Charles III. A source of immense pride for Malaysia, this honour is in recognition of his extraordinary achievements and services to higher education, healthcare and philanthropy, as well as his stalwart commitment to nation-building and sustainable development.

His appointment as Co-Patron comes at a pivotal time as the BMCC continues to expand its initiatives to support businesses in navigating the complexities of the modern global market. His strategic vision and commitment to sustainable development will significantly bolster the Chamber’s efforts in promoting innovation, investment, education, and philanthropic partnerships.

Mak Joon Nien, Chair of the British Malaysian Chamber of Commerce expressed enthusiasm about the appointment, stating, “We are honoured to welcome Tan Sri Sir Dr. Jeffrey Cheah as our Co-Patron. His extensive experience and profound impact on various industries align perfectly with our mission to enhance business collaborations and economic development between the UK and Malaysia. We look forward to his invaluable insights and guidance, especially in the education and healthcare sectors. Notably, his commitment to sustainable development and corporate social responsibility sets a commendable standard for industry leaders worldwide to emulate and integrate into their business practices.”

“We hope to leverage Tan Sri Sir Dr. Jeffrey Cheah’s expertise in the education sector to promote Malaysia as an education hub for international students and to develop and upskill industry-ready talent, particularly in emerging fields such as STEM and digital technology. In healthcare, Tan Sri Sir Dr. Cheah’s foresight and experience will support the Chamber’s goals to transform the delivery of health services through digital technologies, advocate for progressive healthcare policies, and foster partnerships between the public and private sectors in healthcare promotion,” added Mak.

Commenting on his new role, Tan Sri Sir Dr. Jeffrey Cheah said, “I am humbled by this appointment to serve as Co-Patron of BMCC, and for the confidence placed in me by the board of the BMCC. The importance and influence of BMCC reflects the mutual respect, trust and strong bond of friendship between Malaysia and the UK.

I have always believed that to be the best, we must work with the best and learn from the best. Malaysia and Sunway have certainly benefited from active partnerships with the very best that the UK has to offer. As Co-Patron of BMCC, I look forward widening and deepening the close commercial links and strong bonds of friendship between Malaysian and British institutions,” added Tan Sri Sir Dr. Jeffrey Cheah.

Tan Sri Sir Dr. Jeffrey Cheah’s long-standing contributions towards UK-Malaysia collaborations include, among others:

  • Sunway University – Lancaster University partnership: One of the most successful transnational higher education partnerships in the world, and winner of the inaugural “UK-Malaysia Education Institutional Partnership” award at the BMCC Business Excellence Awards 2022. This collaboration encompasses joint degree programmes, research initiatives, and student exchange opportunities, significantly enhancing educational ties between the two countries.
  • Sunway – University of Cambridge partnership: Sunway established a partnership with Royal Papworth Hospital, a highly regarded hospital with close links to the School of Clinical Medicine at the University of Cambridge. This collaboration led to a joint programme between Cambridge’s School of Clinical Medicine and Sunway’s healthcare and educational institutions, which include setting up a Sunway Clinical Research Centre that serves as a regional site partner for Cambridge, the first of its kind in the world.
  • Sustainable Development Initiatives through Philanthropy: The Jeffrey Cheah Foundation has gifted USD 20 million to the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network (UN-SDSN), which includes active participation from UK-based scholars and experts, as well as partnerships with UK organisations focused on sustainable development.

Having distinguished figures like Tan Sri Sir Dr. Jeffrey Cheah and H.E. Ailsa Terry CMG, The British High Commissioner to Malaysia, as Co-Patrons of the BMCC significantly bolsters the Chamber’s endeavours in advancing bilateral trade. Their extensive influence and networks are poised to elevate the credibility and prominence of the Chamber, particularly among key stakeholders. Moreover, their wealth of experience promises to offer invaluable strategic guidance and counsel to the Chamber’s leadership, especially in areas aligned with their respective expertise. We are confident that their involvement will propel the BMCC towards greater effectiveness and impact in achieving its goals.