Dubai Chamber study sheds lights on Southeast Asia’s economic potential

  • New study entitled “Why ASEAN” provides valuable insights on promising ASEAN markets.
  • Study released in the lead up to the inaugural Global Business Forum ASEAN, which takes place December 8-9, 2021 at Expo 2020 Dubai.

Dubai, United Arab Emirates: Southeast Asia offers tremendous investment potential as economies in the region remain resilient and competitive in the face of Covid-related challenges, while the outlook for the region’s economic recovery looks bright, a new Dubai Chamber study entitled “Why ASEAN” has revealed.

The study was released ahead of the Global Business Forum ASEAN (GBF ASEAN), which is organised by Dubai Chamber in partnership with Expo 2020 Dubai under the patronage of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai. The inaugural forum, held under the theme The New Frontiers, takes place December 8-9, 2021 at Expo 2020 Dubai.

A rising economic power

The findings, based on data from the International Monetary Fund and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), indicates that ASEAN countries have strong economies that have succeeded in overcoming the repercussions of Covid-19, with a GDP of $3.1 trillion in 2020. This represents 9.13% of the GDP of the Asian continent. Economic indicators suggest an expected increase of 4.64% by 2025, which highlights the potential of the ASEAN economies and their ability to play a pivotal role in the global economic map. 

High-potential business opportunities 

Despite the fallout from COVID-19 that has casted a shadow on the global economy, ASEAN countries attracted $2.9 trillion of total FDI inflows in 2020, a growth of 8.4% compared to 2019, which constitutes 7% of the total volume of foreign investment inflows in the world, and 34% in Asia. In addition, ASEAN countries achieved the highest growth rate in the Asia in the volume of foreign investment inflows, with a total annual growth of 9.8%.

The remarkable rise in the growth rates of total FDI flows is led by a focus on investing in promising economic sectors such as digital economy, e-commerce, advanced fifth-generation communication networks, and cloud computing that offer high growth opportunities. The study expects that, over the next five years, ASEAN countries will become one of the most prominent and rapidly growing global centers for data storage and management, overtaking North America and Asia Pacific countries.

H.E. Hamad Buamim, President & CEO of Dubai Chamber said the study supports Dubai Chamber’s efforts to provide market intelligence that member companies and UAE businesses can benefit from as they examine trade and investment opportunities emerging across the ASEAN region. The study, he explained, provides detailed information help traders, investors and key decision makers to make informed decisions, adding that such efforts can facilitate trade and investment flows between the UAE and ASEAN markets.

In addition, H.E. Buamim said the findings would be a key focus of discussions between government and business leaders at the upcoming GBF ASEAN, which Dubai Chamber established as an ideal platform to explore new avenues of UAE-ASEAN economic cooperation.

GBF ASEAN is part of Dubai Chamber’s flagship Global Business Forum series, which brings together traders and investors with economic decision makers to identify promising economic growth opportunities and explore investment opportunities between the UAE and the fastest growing markets in the world based on accurate economic studies. The ASEAN  region includes ten countries: Indonesia, Vietnam, Myanmar, Cambodia, Laos, the Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore, in addition to Brunei.

Dubai Chamber mission is to represent, support and protect the interests of the business community in Dubai by creating a favourable business environment, supporting the development of business and promoting Dubai as an international business hub. Since its establishment, the Chamber has contributed to strengthening Dubai’s position as a global destination in the world of finance, business and investment. The Chamber provides a wide range of services that enhance business competitiveness and support sector companies through facilitating the conduct of their business, including issuing certificates of origin, providing data and economic research, providing mediation and commercial arbitration services, receiving foreign trade delegations and sending commercial missions abroad. As well as organising forums, seminars, business meetings and training courses for representatives of the business community, serving business groups and councils, providing credit rating services, and a large number of specialised smart services that meet the needs of members and enhance the investment environment in Dubai.

About Expo 2020 Dubai:

From October 1, 2021 to March 31, 2022, Expo 2020 Dubai welcomes visitors from all over the world, helping to create a new world, while bringing the entire planet together to reshape the future. Under the slogan “Connecting Minds, Creating the Future”, Expo 2020 represents the incubator of the most influential ideas in the world, stimulating the exchange of new visions and inspiring movement towards finding realistic solutions to real world challenges. Expo 2020 Dubai will be the largest cultural gathering in the world, as it will provide amazing and inspiring experiences over a 182 days, and more than 200 entities will contribute to these experiences, including countries, multilateral organisations, companies, and educational institutions, as well as millions of people.  Expo 2020’s subthemes, Opportunity, Mobility and Sustainability, will inspire visitors to conserve and protect our planet, explore new horizons, and create a better future for all. Over a period of six months, Expo 2020 will be an ideal destination for families, filled with thousands of activities and wonderful exploration experiences, and will provide free admission for children under the age of 18. Expo 2020 is committed to build a more equal, just and equitable world for all, while maintaining the safety of visitors, by following the latest guidelines issued by world-leading experts in the fields of medicine, science and health. Expo 2020 Dubai is the first International Expo to be held in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia region, and its location extends over an area of ​​4.38 square kilometers in “Dubai South” near Al Maktoum International Airport. The Expo site represents a practical application of innovation and was built with a vision to being a meaningful and remarkable long-term legacy. After the conclusion of the Expo 2020, it will turn into District 2020, which constitutes a model for a global community that reshapes the features of the cities of the future.