2017 ASEAN Now report launched

18 Dec 2017

The ASEAN region is one of the most dynamic, fastest-growing and diverse markets in the world, and is ripe with opportunities for Australian companies, according to the new ASEAN Now: Insights for Australian business report.

Produced by Austrade, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and Prime Minister and Cabinet, the report provides an overview of the drivers behind ASEAN’s economic growth, the opportunities in each ASEAN market, and practical tips for entering and doing business in the region.

Launched by Austrade CEO Dr Stephanie Fahey on behalf of Steven Ciobo, Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment, the digital version of the report includes 26 case studies showcasing Australian business success in ASEAN. The case studies include a number of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that share their experience of entering and operating in the region.

The report is a key publication ahead of the ASEAN-Australia Special Summit to be held in March 2018. The Prime Minister of Australia, the Hon. Malcolm Turnbull MP, will welcome the Leaders of the Member States of ASEAN and the Secretary-General of ASEAN to Australia. An important event that will lead into the Special Summit is a Business Summit that will bring together leaders of industry and SMEs to help shape and strengthen ASEAN and Australia trade and investment links.

Australia’s trade and investment relationship with ASEAN is already strong – collectively the region is Australia’s third largest trading partner. ASEAN accounts for 11.5 per cent of Australia’s exports and was the largest source of goods export revenue for the country’s SME exporters in 2014–15.

By 2030, ASEAN’s population will reach 700 million, more than half of it urbanised. Substantial investment in infrastructure is needed and there are opportunities for Australian firms to provide consulting expertise, intelligent transport systems, and renewable energy and storage solutions.

The number of middle-class households is also forecast to more than quadruple to 161 million by 2030. Higher disposable incomes mean greater demand for higher-quality products and services. Australia’s premium food, healthcare, education and tourism industries are well placed to meet this demand.

Across ASEAN, the pace of technological change is accelerating. Google estimates around 3.8 million new Southeast Asia users come online every month, making it the fastest-growing internet market in the world. E-commerce in ASEAN is expected to record a 14 per cent compound annual growth rate over the next five years, making online channels an important pathway to market.

Austrade has 11 points of presence across ASEAN that can assist Australian businesses to enter and expand in the region. Contact Austrade for more information.