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Lim Chuan Poh

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Years of service  1979–2003
Spouse  Lim Choy Mei
Rank  Lieutenant general
Name  Lim Poh
Other work  see #Civil career
Allegiance  Singapore
Awards  see #Awards

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Commands held  Commanding Officer, 3rd Singapore Infantry RegimentCommander, 10th Singapore Infantry BrigadeHead, Joint Plans DepartmentCommander, 9th Division (?–1998)Chief of Staff (General Staff) (?–1998)Chief of Army (1998–2000)Chief of Defence Force (2000–2003)

Education  University of Cambridge
Service/branch  Singapore Armed Forces

Similar  Ng Yat Chung, Desmond Kuek, Perry Lim

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Lim Chuan Poh is a Singaporean civil servant and former army general. He was the fourth Chief of Defence Force of the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) from 2000–2003 and held the rank of Lieutenant-General. After retiring from active military service in 2003, Lim served in the Ministry of Education as a Permanent Secretary until 2007 before assuming the position of Chairman of the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), a statutory board under the Ministry of Trade and Industry.


Lim Chuan Poh Mr Lim Chuan Poh

Singapore's Approach to Cyber Security - Creating Cyber Ecosystems


Lim Chuan Poh ASTAR chairman Lim Chuan Poh to receive honorary degree ASU Now

Lim was awarded the Singapore Armed Forces Overseas Scholarship in 1980. He holds Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts degrees in mathematics from St John's College, Cambridge. He attended Camberley Staff College in 1988 and graduated with the Best Overseas Student Award. He also received a Master of Business Administration from Cornell University in 1993. He attended the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School in 2003.

Military career

Lim Chuan Poh Print Change of Chief of Defence Force and Service Chiefs

Lim enlisted in the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) in December 1979. Throughout his military career, he held various appointments, including: Commanding Officer, 3rd Singapore Infantry Regiment; Commander, 10th Singapore Infantry Brigade; Head, Joint Plans Department; Commander, 9th Division; Chief of Staff (General Staff); Chief of Army. On 1 April 2000, Lim succeeded Bey Soo Khiang as the Chief of Defence Force (CDF) of the SAF. He was promoted from Major-General to Lieutenant-General in June 2001.

Lim Chuan Poh SingTels Lim Chuan Poh to retire by yearend Singapore Business Review

Lim retired from the SAF on 1 April 2003 and was succeeded by Ng Yat Chung as the CDF.

Civil career

After leaving the military, Lim served as a Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Education (MOE) from July 2003 to March 2007. During his time in the MOE, Lim oversaw the transformation of the publicly funded universities into autonomous universities and reviewed the university research framework to help those universities develop into research-intensive ones. He also guided the establishment of the Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School.

Lim was appointed as the Chairman of the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), a statutory board under the Ministry of Trade and Industry, on 1 April 2007. He is also the Chairman of the National Infocomm Security Committee and the Governing Board of the Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine of Nanyang Technological University (NTU). Besides, he is a member of various other organisations, including: NTU, A*STAR's Biomedical Research Council, National Research Foundation, Science and Technology in Society (STS), and Japan’s World Premier International Initiative Programme Assessment and Review Committee.


  • Public Administration Medal (Gold) (Military), in 1999.
  • Legion of Merit (Degree of Commander), in 1999 and 2001.
  • Knight Grand Cross of the Most Exalted Order of the White Elephant, in 2001.
  • Bintang Yudha Dharma Utama (The Grand Meritorious Military Order – 1st Class), in 2001.
  • Meritorious Service Medal (Military), in 2003.
  • Honorary Doctor of Science, by Loughborough University in 2008.
  • Honorary Doctor of Laws, by Monash University in 2009.
  • Fellowship of Imperial College, in 2010.
  • Fellowship under the Invitation Programme for Leaders, by the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 2010.
  • Honorary Doctor of Laws, by the Arizona State University in 2012.
  • References

    Lim Chuan Poh Wikipedia