Saturday, October 25, 2014

Investment News and Commentary from Emerging Markets in Asia - China, India and ASEAN




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2point6billion.com discusses business and investment news rising from the geopolitical relations of China and India, and the interactions these two countries have with the rest of emerging Asia.



Foreign Trade

China Leads East Asian Nations on Global Retail Development Index

China leads among East-Asian nations in the Global Retail Development Index, ranking second globally. Other Eastern Asian nations in the index include Malaysia (9), Indonesia (15), Sri Lanka (18), India (20), the Philippines (23) and Vietnam (28). Continue reading

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China-Thailand High-Speed Rail Project Back On Track

Source: www.thai-language.comThailand’s National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) has approved a US$23 billion project to connect two high speed railways with China’s rail network by 2021.

Plans for the Thai railways show one rail will connect the town of Nong Khai, just south of Laos’s capital Vientiane, with Map Ta Phut, located to the southeast of Bangkok. This section of rail is projected to cost 392.5 billion baht (US$12.2 billion) and will run 737 kilometers. Chiang Khong, positioned along Thailand’s northern border, will be connected to Ban Phachi, in the central Ayutthaya regions slightly north of Bangkok, along a track 655 kilometers in length at an expected construction cost of 348.8 billion baht (US$10.85 billion). Continue reading

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China’s May Exports Pick Up, Imports Fall

After gaining 0.9 percent in April, China’s exports strengthened further in May, climbing 7 percent YoY to keep up with market growth projections of about 6.7 percent.

Imports, however, dropped 1.6 percent, according to data from the General Administration of Customs. Trade surplus, consequently, expanded to US$35.9 billion in May from US$18.5 billion in April. Continue reading

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World Bank Encourages Green Development to Boost Growth in Asia

Asia stands to reap large economic rewards with investment into smart-climate practices, according to the World Bank and the ClimateWorks Foundation.

In a new report, “Climate-Smart Development: Adding Up the Benefits of Actions that Help Build Prosperity, End Poverty and Combat Climate Change,” analysts assessed the potential economic, environmental and health impacts of three government policies across six world regions. Continue reading

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Investing in an Online Presence in Asia

Asia is fast on its way to becoming the largest e-commerce market in the world. Internet penetration is growing by leaps and bounds, and the region’s youth population increasingly prefers to interact with companies and retailers over the internet rather than with more traditional forms of physical shopping and communication. Alongside these developments, Asia’s fast-growing middle class has fostered the evolution of a strong online consumer culture that cannot be ignored by companies seeking long-term success in the region.

Continue reading

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Increasing Labor Productivity will be key to China Success

By Renaud Anjoran

The conference organized last week by the European Chamber of Commerce in China was extremely interesting.

I took notes during the other speakers’ presentations, and a theme came back again and again: if China doesn’t increase its labor productivity, times are going to get tough:

  • Tough for China because its potential growth will be seriously capped.
  • And tough for the importers, because costs will have to rise a lot.

The necessity of productivity gains for China’s GDP growth

Ben Simpfendorfer, a strategic consultant with an economic background, set the stage:

  • The working population is contracting and this trend will continue;
  • The debt/GDP ratio has been growing but will have to stabilize sometime in the future, so capital investments will need to decrease.

These two trends mean that the only way for China to keep growing at a rapid rate will be through productivity gains.

How to gain productivity? By making farms, companies, and administrations more efficient. And a big part of this effort will have to take place in factories.

The search of manufacturing efficiencies by importers

I asked the panel of experts for their forecast regarding the rate of price increases over the next 5-10 years. Their responses were pessimistic.

They all agreed that prices of Chinese products would increase faster in the next 5 years than they have over the past 5 years!

The main reasons they invoked were as follow:

  • Supply and demand will dictate higher prices, since there will be less labor supply for the manufacturing sector… and more demand, coming in good part from the domestic market;
  • The central government plans for higher wages and a move to more advanced industries.

Will it be very brutal? Probably not. One speaker suggested it might follow a ”stop & go” pace. His meaning is, Beijing will devalue the currency a little if they see they overshot what foreign companies are willing to pay.

So, what are importers trying to do?

The low-hanging fruits have been reaped. Now, improvements to the bottom line will have to come from reduced waste (in other words, higher efficiency all along the supply chain).

That’s why more and more companies are launching lean programs to reduce costs. And why others are getting their feet wet in other Asian countries.

Renaud Anjoran has been managing his quality assurance agency (Sofeast Ltd) since 2006. In addition, a passion for improving the way people work has pushed him to launch a consultancy to improve factories and a web application to manage the purchasing process. He writes advice for importers on qualityinspection.org.

This article was originally published by Global Sources, March 13, 2014. Global Sources is a leading business-to-business media company that facilitates trade between buyers worldwide and suppliers in China & Asia, via online portals, magazines, research reports and trade fairs.

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Ten of Asia’s Most Dynamic Export Processing Zones That You’ve Never Heard Of

Export capacity building up throughout South-East Asia

Op-Ed Commentary: Chris Devonshire-Ellis

As global manufacturing starts to spread its tentacles across Asia, Export Processing Zones – once the sole preserve of China – are springing up all over. Conceived as ideal for emerging markets as they help develop worker skill sets and begin the development of supply chain infrastructure, they are also popular with foreign investors as they negate the need to import directly into the host country (avoiding import duties) and assist with being able to deliver a cost-effective product by offering VAT rebates on any locally sourced components. Continue reading

Posted in Foreign Trade, Manufacturing, Shipping & Logistics | Leave a comment


2point6billion.com provides news and analysis on foreign trade in south east Asia, with a particular focus on China and India. The stories are contributed by the foreign direct investment experts at Dezan Shira & Associates, who have offices throughout China, India and Vietnam.



Dezan Shira & Associates provide a range of services for companies looking to undertake foreign direct investment into Asia, These include corporate establishment, accounting, tax, payroll, audit and due diligence. To learn more about the firm, please contact one of our specialists at china@dezshira.com, download our corporate brochure or visit at us www.dezshira.com


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