Southeast Asian economies drive emerging markets growth

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Singapore, January 20, 2015 (STAT):-Dynamism and confidence in ASEAN countries is offsetting mixed performance in China, India and the other BRICS economies that powered emerging markets growth in recent years.

The more balanced picture for growth is reflected in the 2015 Agility Emerging Markets Logistics Index, an annual data-driven ranking of 45 emerging economies accompanied by a separate survey of nearly 1,000 global logistics and supply chain executives.

The Index, now in its sixth year, ranks emerging markets based on their size, business conditions, infrastructure and other factors that make them attractive for investment by logistics companies, air cargo carriers, shipping lines, freight forwarders and distribution companies.

Asian countries dominate the Index with four nations ranked in the top 10 emerging markets – China, Indonesia, India and Malaysia. Out of the seven Asian countries among the top 20, five are Southeast Asian nations – Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Philippines and Vietnam.

China, the perennial No. 1, finished atop the rankings again, while India dropped one spot (No.5). Indonesia climbed one spot to No. 4 and the Philippines (16) and Vietnam (19) advanced three and two spots respectively. Malaysia (8) and Thailand (14) retained their positions from last year.

Improving business conditions raised the “market compatibility” scores of Malaysia and Philippines. Malaysia and China ranked among the countries with the best “market connectivity,” a reflection of their transport infrastructure and links. Indonesia is among the “next-tier” non-BRICS economies with populations topping 100 million.

ASEAN’s ten member states have been taking steps toward becoming a single economic market in 2015. The International Monetary Fund forecasts a rebound for one of ASEAN’s largest economies, Thailand, which has been dogged by political instability and remains under martial law.

In the survey, logistics executives were most upbeat about 2015 trade flows between Asia’s emerging markets and other emerging markets. Survey respondents also identified risks to growth by region and provided views on near-sourcing, e-commerce and other trends affecting emerging markets.

“Southeast Asia continues to be one of the world’s most vibrant, fast-growing areas. Growing domestic demand in Indonesia and Malaysia, a strong manufacturing base in Thailand, strong economic growth in Philippines, and a rapidly growing manufacturing base in Vietnam, all position the region well for continued growth,” said Morten Damgaard, CEO of South East Asia for Agility Global Integrated Logistics. “Indonesia in particular stands out as a ‘next-tier’ emerging country with its huge consumer market and the potential to drive growth when performance in BRICS economies slows.”

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