CoST Board


The CoST Board was established in September 2011 to oversee the launch of the CoST programme and to establish a CoST as a not-for-profit legal entity. Its current objectives include:

  • Seeking additional financial support for the CoST programme
  • Setting the admissions criteria for countries to join CoST
  • Approving applications to join CoST
  • Supporting current country programmes

The  Board applies the multi-stakeholder approach to its operations with it's membership drawn from civil society, the private sector, government and the donor community. Members of the CoST Board are as follows:

Christiaan (Chrik) Poortman is Chair of the CoST Interim Board. Until recently he was the Director of Global Programmes at Transparency International (TI) – managing and guiding TI’s programme of global priorities in its fight against corruption. Prior to joining TI, Mr Poortman was working at the World Bank in Washington DC as Regional Vice President for the Middle East and North Africa. Before that, he was Country Director for South East Europe during which time he oversaw the World Bank’s assistance programs in the Balkans, including the post-war reconstruction activities in Bosnia Herzegovina and Kosovo. Much of Mr. Poortman’s career at the World Bank was devoted to Sub-Saharan Africa in a number of different assignments, including as the World Bank’s Country Manager in Zimbabwe during 1990-94. Before joining the World Bank, Mr. Poortman worked as an economist in the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning in Swaziland.  

George Ofori is the Deputy Chair of the CoST Interim Board. He is currently a Professor at the National University of Singapore. He is Director of the M.Sc. (Environmental Management) programme and Co-Director of the Centre for Project Management and Construction Law. He is also a Guest Chair Professor at Tsinghua University in Beijing, China. He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Building, UK; Fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, UK and Fellow of the Society of Project Managers, Singapore. He is also a Fellow of the Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences. He has authored five books, numerous international referred journal papers, conference papers, and book chapters. His main research area is construction industry development. His special interest in this area lies in the improvement of the construction industries of developing countries. He was the Founding Co-ordinator of the CIB Working Commission 107 (W107) on Construction in Developing Countries of the International Council for Research and Innovation in Building and Construction (CIB) (1997 to 2007). He has been a consultant to international agencies (including AusAid, the International Labour Office, United Nations Human Settlements Programme and Commonwealth Secretariat) and governments mainly on construction industry development. He has undertaken major consultancy assignments in Malaysia, Bahrain, Botswana, Ghana, Indonesia, Malawi, Singapore, South Africa, Swaziland and Tanzania.  

Vincent Lazatin is the civil society representative on the CoST Interim Board and Chairman of the CoST Philippines Multi-Stakeholder Group (MSG). Mr. Lazatin is the Executive Director of the Transparency and Accountability Network (TAN), a Philippine-based network of 26 civil society organizations, non-governmental organizations, and academic and research institutions focusing on transparency and accountability in governance. He is also the executive director of Bantay Lansangan (“Road Watch”), a partnership with the Philippines’ Department of Public Work and Highways, formed to reduce corruption in public works. He is also the immediate past chairman and a current member of the Civil Society Coalition for the UN Convention against Corruption, based in Berlin, Germany. Mr. Lazatin a member of the Board of Trustees of the Galing Pook Foundation. Prior to his full-time work with TAN, Mr. Lazatin spent 17 and a half years in the fund management industry, both in the United States and the Philippines.

Frank Kehlenbach is the industry representative on the CoST Interim Board. Frank Kehlenbach is a lawyer by profession with a special experience in the field of European and international law. He started his working career in 1996 at the Federation of German Industries (BDI). In 1997, he joined the German Construction Industry Federation where his responsibility comprised the administration of European International Contractors (EIC). EIC is a European industry federation which has as its members construction federations from 15 European countries and represents the interests of the European construction industry related to its international activities. In 2001, Frank became Director of EIC as well as Director of International Relations in the German Construction Industry Federation. Since being appointed as EIC Director, Frank has been in charge of the publication of five EIC Contractor’s Guides to the FIDIC standard forms of contract. He has also overseen EIC’s publications on Public-Private Partnerships and lately EIC’s Corporate Responsibility Report. Presently, Frank coordinates the work of EIC Working Groups on various subject matters, such as Contract Conditions, Corporate Responsibility, EU Development Policy and World Bank Procurement.

Alfredo Cantero is the government representative on the CoST Interim Board and a member of the CoST Honduras Multi-stakeholder Group (MSG). Alfredo is the Presidential Director for Special Projects, heading Strategic Delivery Unit (Oficina de Seguimiento del Despacho Presidencial) in the Office of the President of Honduras. His Unit is charged with monitoring and ensuring the completion of a number of programs and special projects that have been prioritized by the Honduran Government. The Unit currently monitors thirty programs and projects, transmitting weekly reports to the President on the status of each project, and undertaking focalized interventions whenever necessary in order to correct potential problems. Alfredo has played a vital role in the establishment and success of CoST’s programme in Honduras. He was instrumental in driving Honduras’ application to the CoST programme, and has since been tasked by the President of Honduras to ensure its effective implementation, representing the Infrastructure Cabinet on the CoST Honduras Multi-stakeholder Group (MSG).

Petter Matthews is the International Secretariat representative on the Interim Board. Petter is a senior international development specialist with over twenty years’ experience. He joined EAP in December 2002 and has led the development of our current programme. He holds a BA Development Studies and Politics (London) and an MSc Social Policy and Planning in Developing Countries (London). After working as a construction manager in the UK, Petter first became involved in international development in 1989, when he worked as a Project Manager for the Government of Tuvalu. Since then he has worked for a number of NGO’s and community based organisations in Africa and Asia on issues related to the built environment. In his last position, he was the CEO of a Community Development Trust in South Africa.

Date Published: 11 December 2013
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