“When elephants fight, it is the grass that suffers”.
Already, economists are noting the ill-effects of trade tensions between the 2 biggest economies in the world. The conflict threatens to derail a period of steady economic growth. ASEAN is not spared, as both countries are the region’s biggest trading partners as well.
Being situated in close proximity to major manufacturing hubs in Asia, and concurrently a large producer of many soft commodities, ASEAN has a strategic advantage when it comes to the commodities trade.
Given its geographical advantage, Singapore is also positioning itself as a Global Hub for commodities trading, providing a suite of services from innovation to dispute resolution. However, with the threat of trade tariffs, how will the ecosystem evolve to cope with new challenges?
The Indochinese region has benefitted largely from Chinese FDI in the region, amid US-China trade tensions. China is a key trading partner and the largest foreign investor in the region, capitalising on the region’s friendly tariff policies, rich natural resources, cheap labour costs and close proximity to the Chinese mainland. Foreign firms have also shifted production bases to the region to escape the geopolitical risks. According to Citi, FDI inflow into Vietnam increased by 69% between January to May this year.
The education industry in South East Asia is rising dramatically in terms of scale, driven by the increasing demand from Asia’s growing middle class. The session will delve into this high-growth and fairly recession-resistant sector.
In an age of ecommerce and disruption, companies constantly seek to evolve and pre-empt change before competitors do. The logistics sector is one that is facing major challenges with regards to disruption, intense competition and cost cutting. Already, we see a reinvention of the supply chain, graced by the welcoming of technology, automation and data analytics, in a traditionally rigid industry.