The ten ASEAN countries account for 617 million people – 9% of the world’s population. The region has a GDP of USD2,320 billion, making it the eighth largest world economy.
The region’s middle class is developing rapidly and will reach 105.5 million in 2015. Spending power is rising too, expenditure grew at a CAGR of 9-10% during 2007-2012.
Not only is consumer spending on the increase, ASEAN’s production base is expanding too. Average GDP growth for the area was 5.2% in 2012, Indonesia led with its GDP of USD895 billion and growth of 6.2%. Latecomers enjoyed higher growth – Laos had 8.3%, Cambodia 6.5% and Myanmar 6.2% in the same year.
Although the business environments and leading industrial sectors vary among the ten countries, ASEAN will create a common market by 2015 when goods and services produced in the area will be able to be traded between member states without constraint. Businesses targeting the ASEAN region may need to see it from two points of view – both as individual countries and as a common market.
SAI has developed a complimentary executive briefing on ASEAN. It focuses on:
- ASEAN as your market
- ASEAN as your business/production center
- ASEAN as a common economic area