Why invest in ASEAN?
Sustained Economic Growth
Macroeconomic policies pursued by ASEAN Member States and cooperation initiatives at the regional level strengthen the region’s strong economic credentials. ASEAN is able to sustain its GDP growth at 5.3 percent since 2006. Its GDP rose from US$1.8 trillion in 2010 to US$2.2 trillion in 2011, 30 percent that of China and about 15 percent that of the United States of America.
Foreign direct investments (FDI) stock grew almost four times in the last decade from US$266 billion in 2000 to US$1.1 trillion in 2011. In the same year, total trade amounted to US$ 2.4 trillion, and grows at an average of 16.8 percent.
Inflation was eased at 4.3%.
Positive Perception on ASEAN
Along with the positive trends in FDIs is multinational companies’ improved perception on ASEAN countries. The most recent UNCTAD’s Investment Report rank Indonesia, Thailand, Viet Nam, and Malaysia as among the top 20 most desirable destination economies for 2012-2014. Indonesia landed on top 4, two notches higher than its previous ranking.
Other ASEAN countries also enjoy improved perception. In the Global Competitiveness Index 2012-2013, Singapore remained as the 2nd most competitive economy. Philippines improved its ranking by 10 notches from 75th to 65th, Thailand improved to 38th place from 39th, while Brunei maintained its rank at 28th place.
ASEAN Countries as Economies of the Future
HSBC, one of the largest banks in the world, predicted the Philippines and Indonesia to be the 16th and 17th largest economies in the world by 2050 based on fundamentals such as current income per capita, rule of law, education, and demographic change. Malaysia, Thailand, Viet Nam, and Singapore were included in the top 50 economies predicted to dominate the world.
Reasons for Investing in ASEAN
ASEAN is a choice destination for ASEAN and international investors. Investors enjoy profitable operations and commit to deeper engagement in the region as shown by strong reinvestment and sustained growth in foreign direct investments (FDI). FDI stock in the region has quadrupled within a little more than a decade. In 2011, FDI stock exceeded US$1 trillion compared with only US$266 billion in 2000.