In its fascination with all things China, much of the world seems to have overlooked one of the great trading opportunities of the post-crisis global economy: the potential of Southeast Asia.
It is a strange omission. The 10 Asean members comprise a market of 601 million people with a combined gross domestic product (GDP) of US$2.1 trillion, solid growth, low manufacturing costs and a rising middle class hungry for the consumer experience.
We expect these trends will be amplified when the Asean Economic Community (AEC) comes into existence at the end of 2015. The AEC is designed to eliminate tariffs and other trade barriers between Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam, effectively creating what could be one of the world's biggest single markets.
This article is older than 60 days, which we reserve for our premium members only.You can subscribe to our premium member subscription, here.