Aviation article(s)
April 9, 2024

Singapore's Changi Airport Group (CAG) announced a leadership transition at the company.


It said that after 15 years as chief executive officer (CEO), Lee Seow Hiang would step down on July 1, 2024. He would also subsequently step down as a director on the CAG Board and as chairman of the boards of Changi Airports International (CAI) and Jewel Changi Airport Devt.


The CAG Board then appointed Yam Kum Weng to succeed Lee as CEO of CAG. He will also be appointed a director of the CAG Board and as chairman of the CAI Board with effect from July 1, 2024.


Yam is currently CAG's executive vice president of airport Development, leading the Changi East project, including Terminal 5 (T5). 


Lee was appointed the founding CEO of CAG when Changi Airport was corporatised on July 1, 2009. In the 15 years that followed, CAG made great strides in the development of Changi as a premier air hub  —today, the most internationally connected in South East Asia with links to more than 150 destinations worldwide.


The announcement noted that over the last 10 years, Lee also laid the foundations of the future Changi East development including T5. Following a two-year pandemic-related pause, work on the development has resumed and is making good progress, with groundbreaking to take place next year.


Paying tribute to Lee's many years of dedicated service, Tan Gee Paw, Chairman of CAG, said, "The Board Directors and I thank Seow Hiang for his immense contributions to CAG and Changi Airport. In the last decade and a half, Seow Hiang's vision transformed Changi into the airport it is today —a strong air hub with an extensive network of city links, providing an extraordinary experience and supporting Singapore's economy."


Tan added that the board carefully reviewed its options when considering a replacement for Seow Hiang, recognising that Changi Airport is a critical infrastructure and that leadership continuity is vital to advancing CAG's plans.


"A key undertaking for CAG is the mega-development of Changi East and T5, which is entering a critical phase in the coming years. At the same time, CAG faces the challenge of ensuring smooth airport operations as passenger traffic at Changi Airport continues to recover post-Covid."


"The Board is confident that Kum Weng, as a senior executive with many years of experience leading Singapore's air hub development and airport management in both the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore and CAG, is best suited to anchor the twin challenges of running an operationally-intensive airport while ensuring the success of the Changi East/ T5 programme," he added.


Lee, for his part, said, "It has been a gift of grace and a privilege of a lifetime to be a member of this special Changi community for these incredible years."



"The last 15 years have been an exhilarating journey of building the best air hub for Singapore. We worked hard to double the size and vibrancy of our air hub to almost 70 million passengers a year but lost it all during the COVID-19 years. Yet, we kept our fundamentals strong and today, we are emerging stronger on our full recovery," he said.


"I am leaving with the deepest confidence that, under Kum Weng's leadership, the best days for the Changi air hub are yet to be," Lee added.

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