Our Team in Mongolia

Tapan Mishra

Tapan Mishra

Resident Coordinator
Mr Tapan Mishra has taken over his role as the United Nations Resident Coordinator (UN RC) for Mongolia in September 2019. As UN RC, the highest-ranking representative of the United Nations Development System in Mongolia, he has been designated by the UN Secretary-General to lead the UN Country Team in coordinating operational activities for development in the country. Before this post in Mongolia, Mr Mishra served as UN RC in DPR Korea from 2015 to 2019. Mr Tapan Mishra first joined the UN system in 2003 as the UNDP Learning Advisor and Deputy Chief of the Learning Resources Centre (LRC) in the Office of Human Resources, Bureau of Management where he moved up to become the Director and Chief of LRC from 2007 to 2013.

Atsuko Okuda

Regional Director, ITU ROAP
Atsuko Okuda is the Regional Director of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), for Asia and the Pacific. Ms. Okuda has several years of professional and leadership experience in the field of ICT and development working with different UN organizations. Prior to joining ITU, she was the Chief of the ICT and Development Section of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), in Bangkok, Thailand where she promoted the development of regional broadband connectivity through the implementation of the Asia-Pacific Information Superhighway (AP-IS) initiative. Ms. Okuda has also worked with the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) in Beirut, UNHQ, the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) and the UNDP Country Office in Bhutan.
Okuda obtained a BA from Kyoto University (Japan), M.A. from Helsinki University (Finland) and a PhD from the United Nations University – Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (Netherlands).

Chang-Hee Lee

Changhee Lee

Director of ILO Country Office for China and Mongolia
Dr. Changhee LEE is appointed as Director of ILO Country Office for China and Mongolia, effective from July 1, 2021. He joined ILO HQ in Geneva in 1996 where he participated in a number of major global research programme on industrial relations. Subsequently he worked as an industrial relations specialist of the ILO’s East Asian team in Bangkok covering South East and North East Asia (2000-2006) and in Beijing covering China, Mongolia and Viet Nam (2006-2012) During his service in East Asia, he provided policy advices to tripartite industrial relations actors in East Asia on a wide range of industrial relations policy issues. In 2012, he returned to ILO HQ in Geneva and worked as a senior policy analyst of the Policy Integration Department, and a senior labour relations specialist at the Inclusive Labour Markets, Labour Relations and Working Conditions Branch (INWORK). He was also a member of the Task Force for reform of ILO’s field operation, appointed by the Director-General. He worked as a Director of ILO Country Office for Viet Nam since September 2015 until his recent appointment of Country Director of ILO Country Office for China and Mongolia on July 1, 2021. Chang-Hee Lee is a citizen of the Republic of Korea. He has a Ph.D of sociology from Seoul National University (1996), and he worked as a research fellow (1993-95) and a visiting professor (2010) at the Institute of Social Sciences, Tokyo University, Japan. He has numerous articles published on industrial relations and human resource management on international academic journals. He co-edited a book “Industrial Relations in Emerging Economies – Quest for Inclusive Development” (Elgar, 2018).
Dmitry Frischin

Dmitry Frischin

Regional Portfolio Manager, Regional Office for Asia-Pacific
Mr. Dmitry Frischin took up his appointment as the Regional Portfolio Manager, United Nations Volunteers’ Regional Office for Asia-Pacific in Bangkok, Thailand, since 29 October 2020. Dmitry was with the United Nations Volunteers (UNV) since 2012, leading the Regional Office for Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States, UNV programmes in Central Asia in Kazakhstan and UNV country programmes in Ethiopia and Kenya before. Dmitry is a management professional with 23 years of experience in the fields of governance, economic development, inclusion and youth empowerment, gender mainstreaming, environment and disaster risk reduction. He started his career as a Consultant and, later, Senior Specialist of the International Economic Relations of the Belarusian Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Dmitry holds the Master’s Degree in Public and Municipal Administration with majors in Management, Economics and Law.

Eamonn Murphy

Regional Director for Asia and Pacific
Eamonn Murphy leads UNAIDS’ efforts in promoting an expanded and integrated United Nations system response to HIV at the country and regional levels for Asia Pacific and Eastern Europe and Central Asia regions. Previously Mr Murphy was Deputy Executive Director, Programme a.i. Until October 2021, Mr Murphy was Regional Director for Asia and the Pacific, where he supported countries across the region in achieving the goals outlined in the United Nations Political Declaration on Ending AIDS as well as the Global AIDS Strategy. Prior to that, Mr Murphy was the UNAIDS Country Director in Myanmar, where he supported Myanmar’s significant scale-up of services and helped to create an enabling environment and overcome legislative obstacles. He also served in Viet Nam as UNAIDS Country Director, where he was honoured with the Order of Friendship by the President in 2010 in recognition of his commitment to the people of Viet Nam. He also served in UNAIDS Global Centre as Director of Governance, United Nations System and Donor Relations, and as the first UNAIDS Country Coordinator in Myanmar. Before joining the United Nations in 2002, Mr Murphy held several senior positions with the Australian Government, including Director for Health Sectors with AusAID in the Foreign Ministry, as well as Head of the Communicable Diseases and Environmental Health Branch and Director of the National AIDS Programme for the Commonwealth Health Department.
Evariste Kouassi Komlan

Evariste Kouassi-Komlan

Mr Evariste Kouassi-Komlan was appointed to the position of UNICEF Representative to Mongolia in November 2021. He brings extensive experience working on children’s issues in development and complex humanitarian contexts, with a particular focus on ensuring linkages between climate change and social sectors, as well as a history of building partnerships. Prior to this appointment, Mr Kouassi-Komlan was Regional Adviser for Water, Sanitation and Hygiene in UNICEF East Asia and Pacific Regional Office based in Bangkok, Thailand, where he provided leadership for water, sanitation, and hygiene programmes in 24 countries and territories with a focus on innovative technical and financial solutions. Mr Kouassi-Komlan served as Senior Adviser and Deputy Director of UNICEF Global WASH programme at UNICEF Headquarters between 2012-2018 where he led UNICEF’s global WASH policy, human resource development, planning, and monitoring, providing leadership for more than 100 countries. Previously, Mr Kouassi-Komlan served as Director of External Affairs, Research and Strategic Development at Centre Regional pour l’Eau Potable et l’Assainissement in Burkina Faso from 2003 to 2008 where he provided programmatic and managerial leadership and orientation to 24 French and English-speaking African countries. Mr Kouassi-Komlan holds Master of Science in Utility Management from UNESCO-IHE in the Netherlands. Mr Kouassi-Komlan is a Togolese national.
Dr. Ganbold Baasanjav

Ganbold Baasanjav

Head of East and North-East Asia Office
Dr. Ganbold Baasanjav is the Head of United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UN ESCAP) East and North-East Asia Office based in Incheon, Republic of Korea. Prior to UNESCAP, Dr. Ganbold has worked extensively for the government of Mongolia serving within the country in the Foreign Ministry as well as abroad in a diplomatic capacity. He was most recently the Ambassador-at-large for Sustainable Development at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Mongolia (2018-2019). Prior to this, he has served as the Mongolian Ambassador to the Republic of Korea (2013-2018), Director-General of the Asia and the Pacific Department at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Mongolia (2008-2013), and the Mongolian Ambassador to Vietnam (2004-2008). Dr. Ganbold has also served as the State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Mongolia (2001-2003) and as the Director-General of the Public Affairs Department at the Ministry of External Relations of Mongolia (1998-2000). His earlier career includes overseas diplomatic assignments with the Mongolian Embassy in Pyongyang, DPR of Korea (1989-1993). Dr. Ganbold was also a part-time lecturer and Dean for the Department of International Relations, School of Foreign Service, at the National University of Mongolia (1997-2001).
Dr. Ganbold is fluent in English, Korean and Russian, and earned his BA in International Relations from Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO), Russia an MA in Political Science from University of Hawaii at Manoa, USA and a PhD in Law from Hankuk University of Foreign Studies, Republic of Korea.
He is married with four children.

Giuseppe Crocetti

Chief of Mission
Mr. Giuseppe Crocetti was appointed as the IOM Chief of Mission in the People’s Republic of China and the non-resident IOM Chief of Mission for Mongolia based in Beijing, China in 2018. Mr. Giuseppe Crocetti graduated in Law and received his Masters in European Studies and International Relations from La Sapienza University in Rome in 2002. Admitted to the Bar soon after his university studies, Mr. Crocetti practiced law before the Italian courts before joining in 2004 the International Criminal Tribunal for the Genocide in Rwanda based in Arusha, Tanzania. Specializing in international human rights law with a focus on migrants rights, Mr. Crocetti began his career with the International Organization for Migration in 2005 serving first with the IOM Mission in Sri Lanka until 2007. From 2007 to 2009 Mr. Crocetti was posted in Cambodia leading IOM’s programming in the area of technical cooperation and capacity building on migration management. In 2009 Mr. Crocetti was appointed as the IOM Chief of Mission in Papua New Guinea where he served for four years assisting, amongst many other achievements, the government of Papua New Guinea in becoming a Member State of IOM.
Jeremy Douglas

Jeremy Douglas

Jeremy Douglas is the Regional Representative of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) for Southeast Asia and the Pacific overseeing and managing operations and strategy from Myanmar to the Pacific in the areas of rule of law, non-traditional security threats, law enforcement, criminal justice and drug-related supply and health issues. Based in Bangkok, Thailand, he is also the UNODC liaison to China, Korea, Japan and Mongolia and to regional organizations including the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (PIF). Prior to his appointment as Regional Representative for Southeast Asia and the Pacific, he was the UNODC Representative in Pakistan (September 2009 - April 2013). Between 2007 and 2009, Mr. Douglas was based in UNODC Headquarters as Manager of UNODC's Global SMART Programme and previously he was Regional Project Coordinator for UNODC in East Asia, managing a project covering ASEAN states and China. Mr. Douglas has also worked with the United Nations in New York, the Management Board Secretariat of the Government of Ontario in Canada, and in the Caribbean. Mr. Douglas is a graduate of the London School of Economics in the United Kingdom and Bishop's University in Canada.
Jonathan Gilman

Jonathan Gilman

Regional Development Coordination Officer
Jonathan Gilman, a British national, is Regional Development Coordinator for the United Nations Environment Programme’s Asia Pacific Office based in Bangkok. Jonathan has worked with the UN for 19 years. He has worked at the HQs level with UNDP’s Bureau for Development Policy and the UN Development Coordination Office in New York. At the country level he worked with the UN Peace Keeping mission for East Timor (UNTAET) as a Civil Affairs Officer and in the Resident Coordinator’s Office Indonesia where he was part of a small team that prepared the UN Recovery Framework for Aceh and Nias after the tsunami in 2004. At the regional level and prior to joining UNEP, he was Regional Economist for UN Food and Agriculture Organization’s avian influenza programme. He graduated with a Master’s degree in Environmental Economics from University College London, UK.
Khalid Sharifi

Khalid Sharifi

Head of Office
Khalid Sharifi, an Afghan national, is a Medical doctor, who graduated from Kabul Medical University. He holds a Master’s Degree in Public Health from Royal Tropical Institute/VU University in Netherlands and Post Graduate Diploma in Health Care Management from the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute/Basel University in Switzerland. Khalid Sharifi has been serving the UNFPA since 2015 in various roles, including Planning, Monitoring, and Evaluation Specialist in UNFPA Afghanistan, UNFPA Assistant Representative in Afghanistan and Deputy Representative a.i in the absence of the Deputy Representative. Before joining the UNFPA, he has served in Afghan NGOs in implementing the Primary and Secondary Health Care program in Afghanistan in the capacity of Managing Director, Health Director, and Program Manager for more than ten years. In addition, Khalid has worked in the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and the Afghan Red Crescent Society for nine years. Khalid also practiced clinical medicine at Kabul National Hospitals for four years as a pediatrician. Operational research is a favorite field of work for Khalid. During the past 15 years, Khalid participated as a principal/co-researcher in Afghanistan's public health operation research/program evaluation series. He contributed to public health research of Afghanistan as a member of the national Institutional Review Board (IRB). Khalid brings 22 years of experience leading and administering development and humanitarian operations from grassroots to the national level. Driven by the power of data, he is passionate about using evidence-based results to conduct public advocacy and high-level policy dialogue to influence decision-makers on the necessity of reproductive and sexual health, reproductive rights, youth development and gender equality for sustainable development.
Laxman Perera

Laxman Perera

Human Settlements Officer, UN-Habitat Regional Office for Asia and Pacific
Mr. Laxman Perera has been serving as a Human Settlements Officer at the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific (ROAP) over last six years in Japan. Mr. Perera is currently responsible for UN-Habitat programmes in Bangladesh, Cambodia, Mongolia, Pakistan and Vietnam. He is also the focal point for housing and slum upgrading, urban basic services, private sector partnership, human rights, safer cities programme at the regional office and also acting as Country Manager for Sri Lanka. He has served as the UN-Habitat Habitat Programme Manager in Sri Lanka over 5 years and as the Deputy Country Manager of UN-Habitat in Myanmar. Prior to his engagement with United Nations, he has served more than 20 years in the Sri Lankan government as a senior official of the Sri Lanka Administrative Service and worked in the fields of urban development, housing, urban basic services, youth development, post disaster and post conflict reconstruction and community development. Mr. Perera is a Sri Lankan national and has a Master of Arts in International Relations.

Matilda Dimovska

Ms. Matilda Dimovska assumed the role of UNDP Resident Representative in Mongolia as of 4 September 2023.
In her role, Ms. Dimovska acts on behalf of the UNDP Administrator and as the head of the Country Office has the overall responsibility for the operational activities of UNDP in Mongolia.
Prior to this, she served as UNDP Resident Representative in the Republic of Uzbekistan from 2019 to 2023.
During 2016-2019 she led the Country Office Support Team at UNDP Istanbul Regional Hub for Europe and the CIS as of July 2016 and in that capacity, she supported Country and Project Management Offices in the region. She also served as Deputy Resident Representative of UNDP in Turkey (2012-2016), Deputy Resident Representative of UNDP in Moldova (2008-2012) and Assistant Resident Representative of UNDP in Georgia (2006 -2008).
A citizen of the Republic of North Macedonia, Ms. Dimovska previously worked for UNDP in New York and her home country. Prior to UNDP, she served as a Representative to UNIDO Investment Promotion Service in Vienna and worked for the Macedonian Privatization Agency and the private sector in Skopje. Ms. Dimovska holds Master’s degree in Economic Policy and Development from “St. Cyril and Methodius” University in Skopje.
Rory Mungoven

Rory Mungoven

Chief of the Asia and Pacific Region
Mr Rory Mungoven is Chief of the Asia-Pacific Region with the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights. From 2004 to 2007, he served as Senior Human Rights Advisor (UNDP) with the Resident Coordinator’s Office in Sri Lanka during the peace process and post-tsunami response. From 2016 to 2019, Mr Mungoven served as the country representative for ILO and developed the first ever Decent Work Country Programme in Myanmar. On behalf of the Resident Coordinator, he co-chaired the Cooperation Partners Group in Myanmar, and led inter-agency working groups under the “people and planet” pillar of the first UNDAF in Myanmar. Prior to joining the UN System in 2004, Mr Mungoven worked as an Australian diplomat, posted in Namibia and Pakistan, and as an advisor in the Prime Minister’s department. Mr Mungoven obtained his Master’s degree in Applied Anthropology and Participatory Development from the Australian National University and an honours degree in history from the University of Sydney.
Sakphouseth Meng

Sakphouseth Meng

Country director
Seth is appointed as IFAD Country Director for Mongolia effective from January 1, 2023. He join IFAD in 2008 to promote the effective dialogue and partnership with a broad range of stakeholders including civil society, private sector, government, and development partners in the context of rural development and poverty reduction. He is currently based in Cambodia.

He is the co-founder of the IFAD’s Programmatic Approach to scale the impact for the sustainable development of the rural livelihood and achieve high impact on strategic partnerships with a broad range of stakeholders, among others, the partnership with GEF, EIB, EU, ADB, GCF and AIIB in Cambodia. He co-led the development of the first IFAD Non-Sovereignty Operation facility for innovative VC financing instruments with AMK Microfinance to promote Pro-Poor Rural Investment in the Asia and Pacific Region.

Seth earned a bachelor’s degree in economy from Faculty of Law and Economic Science in 1996 and a master’s degree in business administration, specializing in Agri-business in 1998 from Asian Institute of Technology, Bangkok, Thailand.

Samina Kadwani

Country director
Ms. Samina Kadwani is a senior management professional with more than 25 years of experience in the development sector, 20 of which she spent in UNOPS implementing and overseeing complex multifaceted programs out of New York, Copenhagen, Geneva and Bangkok. She is a US Certified Project Manager and has a degree in Sociology. She is currently the Director of the UNOPS Multi-Country Office for East Asia and the Pacific and is responsible for UNOPS activities across 24 countries. She has deep knowledge of the Asia-Pacific region, as well as global, regional and country level operations of UNOPS, across programs, business acquisition, management and operations. She has overseen projects in the areas of health, climate change, energy, sustainable economic diversification, and emergency recovery.
Sarah Knibbs

Sarah Knibbs

UN Women
Office in Charge, UN Women regional Office
Sarah Knibbs has been working in the Asia Pacific region for the last 25 years, with a range of organisations including UN Women, UNFPA, DFID China, Save the Children Fund, VSO and the Khmer HIV/AIDS NGO Alliance (KHANA). Her work has focused on gender, violence against women, HIV, youth issues, and sexual and reproductive health and rights. Sarah joined UN Women in 2014. She was initially based at Cambodia Country Office and moved to the UN Women Regional Office for Asia Pacific in June 2020 where she is the Deputy Regional Director. She is currently the Regional Director, Ad Interim. Sarah is from the UK and studied History at Oxford for her first degree, later taking an MSc in Development Management specialising in Population and Reproductive Health at the University of Wales Swansea.
Shahbaz Khan

Shahbaz Khan

Professor Shahbaz Khan (Australian) is the Director of the UNESCO Office in Beijing and UNESCO Representative to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Japan, Mongolia, People’s Republic of China, and the Republic of Korea. Prof Khan joined UNESCO in 2008 at its Headquarters as Chief of the Water and Sustainable Development Section. Then he served as the Director of the Regional Bureau for Sciences in Asia and the Pacific in Jakarta, Indonesia, and UNESCO Representative to Indonesia, Brunei Darussalam, Malaysia, the Philippines and Timor-Leste (2015-2021).

Prof Khan has worked in Australia, France, Indonesia and Pakistan in various research, consultancy and policy positions. Before joining UNESCO, he was
Professor and Director at the Charles Sturt University (Australia). His work has been widely recognized e.g. 2019 China Friendship Award, Great Wall Friendship Award China 2017, FEIAP Engineer of the Year Award 2016, UNESCO Team Award for Managing Hydro Hazards 2009, Land and Water Australia’s Eureka Prize 2007,
CSIRO Medal 2007, Biennial Medal of the Modelling and Simulation Society of Australia and New Zealand. Prof Shahbaz Khan is currently an Adjunct Professor at the University of Canberra and Western Sydney University (Australia), Adjunct Professor at the Lincoln University (New Zealand), Distinguished Professor at the National University of Science and Technology (Pakistan) and Distinguished Professor at the Capital Normal University (China).

Professor Shahbaz Khan holds a Bachelor of Science (Honours) degree in Civil Engineering (1990) from the University of Engineering and Technology, Lahore (Pakistan), a Master of Science degree in Water Resources Technology and Management (1992) and a Doctorate in Civil Engineering (1995) from the University of Birmingham (United Kingdom). He also holds a Master’s degree in International Environmental Law (2005) from Macquarie University (Australia) and a Master’s degree in Applied Environmental Economics (2007) from Imperial College London (United Kingdom) as well as a Hon Doctorate Environment and Development from the National University of Malaysia (2016) Hon DSc from the University of Birmingham (2018).
Sherif Messiha

Sherif Messiha

Regional Security Advisor covering PR China, Japan, DPR Korea, RO Korea and Mongolia

Socorro Escalante

Dr Socorro Escalante, MD, MBA, assumed her duties of WHO Representative in Mongolia on 02 January 2023. Prior to this assignment, Dr Escalante served as a Team Coordinator of Universal Health Coverage at WHO Country Office in Vietnam. From 2017 to 2022, Dr Escalante worked as a Coordinator of Essential Medicines and Technologies at Office for the Western Pacific. Dr Escalante started her service in WHO in 2006 as a Programme Officer of Pharmaceuticals. Prior to working with WHO, Dr Escalante was a Provincial Board Member at the Provincial Government of La Union, Philippines, and then Medical Specialist at the Department of Health – Regional Office in La Union, Philippines. Dr Escalante graduated from the Saint Louis University in Philippines as a Doctor of Medicine. She holds MBA in Health from the Ateneo de Manila University in Makati, Philippines. Dr Socorro Escalante speaks English and Filipino and is a national of the Republic of the Philippines.
Stephen B Kargbo

Stephen Bainous Kargbo

Representative and Head of UNIDO’s Regional Office in the People’s Republic of China
Mr. Kargbo is the Representative and Head of UNIDO’s Regional Office in the People’s Republic of China, which also covers the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) and Mongolia. He has an accumulated national and international work experience of over thirty (30) years in teaching/research, organizational change and development work. He has held various positions in NGOs, Academia and the UN system (UNDP and UNIDO). Before his reassignment to China, he was UNIDO Representative to Tanzania, Mauritius and the Secretariat of the East African Community (EAC). He previously served in UNIDO’s Regional Office in Ethiopia, supporting programmes and operations in Burundi, Rwanda and Uganda, as well as activities related to the African Union Commission.Mr. Kargbo holds a B.Sc. in Agricultural Education from the University of Sierra Leone, M.Sc. in Rural Development and PhD in Agricultural Economics both from the Georg-August University of Goettingen, Germany.
Sylvie Bétemps Cochin

Sylvie Bétemps Cochin

Senior Trade Promotion Officer, Office for Asia and the Pacific
Sylvie Bétemps Cochin is Senior Trade Promotion Officer, Country Manager for Mongolia, within the Office for Asia and The Pacific, at the International Trade Centre (ITC). Sylvie Bétemps Cochin has more than 20 years of experience in international trade, project management and trade-related technical assistance in Asia and Africa. She is responsible for a portfolio of 14 Asian countries, including least developed countries (LDCs), for which she leads country coordination and client relationships. She has managed and developed multi-disciplinary trade-related technical assistance projects in Asia and Africa. She was also responsible for managing regional initiatives, supporting south-south trade promotion, institutional strengthening and the competitiveness of small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs).
vinod Ahuja

Vinod Ahuja

Prior to moving to Mongolia, he was based at the FAO Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific, Bangkok as Livestock Policy Officer. During 1998-2009, he taught at the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, India and worked for the World Bank in Washington DC during 1994-97. He has written extensively on a broad range of topics including barriers to collective action, poverty and income distribution, commercialization of agricultural services and food security and nutrition. He has supported a large number of field projects in Asia and promoted partnerships towards establishing new service delivery models based on genuine farmer needs. He has been an ardent advocate of the potential of dairy sector towards promotion of household food security, nutrition, and empowerment of women in poor countries. In January 2016, he was recognized by the Dairy Farming Promotion Organization of Thailand for his contribution to Asian dairy sector. In recognition of his contribution, DPO awarded him a plaque which was given by HRH Princess Mahachakri Sirindhorn in the opening ceremony of the national dairy festival of Thailand. In March 2017, he was presented the Asian Dairy Personality award by VIV Asia.