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  • Editor’s Picks / 29 July 2016 at 0:33 GMT

    India, ASEAN gain appeal as wary Japanese firms turn away from China

    Nikkei Asian Review
    Japanese companies no longer see China as a top destination for investment, and are turning to India and ASEAN for growth, according to a joint survey by Nikkei Inc and the Center for Strategic and International Studies. A combination of China's slower growth and aggressive national security policies has dented the Japanese appetite to invest in the world's most populous nation. Since its accession to the WTO in 2001, China has been the top desitnation Japanese foreign direct investment in Asia, except for 2013, when Thailand briefly overtook it. However, when asked which emerging economy their company would invest in today, 50% said India and 38% said ASEAN, while only 4% of respondents named China.
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  • Editor’s Picks / 05 January 2016 at 21:59 GMT

    ASEAN launches EU-style bloc – but will it work?

    South China Morning Post
    Southeast Asian nations have launched an EU-inspired economic bloc aimed at boosting the region’s trading clout and attracting investment. The 10 member Association of Southeast Asian Nations hailed the project as a “milestone” in combining the economic force of a resource-rich and growing market of more than 600 million people. The vision for the Asean Economic Community is a single market with a free flow of goods, capital and skilled labour, which should help the region compete with China for foreign investment. But experts say such an idea is difficult, if not impossible, to achieve in a region marked by extremes in development levels, democratisation, and institutional capability.
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  • Article / 29 December 2015 at 13:00 GMT

    Don't know much about finance

    Don't know much about finance
    Average financial literacy even in the developed world is poor, a recent study shows. Simple and important concepts such as compound interest are not understood by everybody. Out of the 10 countries where people have best knowledge 7 are also ranked as having a top-pension system, often partly capital based. That might suggest that people are able to acquire financial basics if they see the need. However, in reality it might be even more important for the rest to be financial literate as they might have to take care of their pensions themselves. Read here where people are doing best – and for sure there will be some surprises.
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  • Editor’s Picks / 16 December 2015 at 22:03 GMT

    ASEAN has much to learn from EU on integration, identity

    Nikkei Asian Review
    Leaders of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations had bold plans to unveil a new economic community this year, a vast, integrated 10-country market stretching from Hanoi to Jakarta, with more than 600 million people and combined GDP of $2.6 trillion. But those lofty ambitions have remained symbolic, with leaders able to agree by the year-end deadline on only about 80% of the steps needed to break down barriers to the free flow of goods, services and people. But there is one path for ASEAN to successful integration; leaders should get out of the way and let their young people take the lead. In this, ASEAN can learn from the world's most successful regional bloc, the EU.
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  • Editor’s Picks / 08 December 2015 at 6:36 GMT

    Myanmar opens stock exchange

    CNBC
    Former pariah state Myanmar is set to launch its new stock exchange on Wednesday, marking the next stage in the rehabilitation of a country basking in the glow of strong foreign inflows and a new pro-business regime. Nyshka Chandran writes the Yangon Stock Exchange (YSX) – reportedly a $24 million investment – was founded by the state-owned Myanmar Economic Bank, Daiwa Securities and Japan Exchange Group, a company that operates the Tokyo Stock Exchange. The launch marks yet another milestone in the rapid modernisation of Myanmar, which has been opening up its economy following decades under military rule.
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  • Editor’s Picks / 23 November 2015 at 0:13 GMT

    ASEAN takes baby steps towards integration

    Nikkei Asian Review
    The ASEAN Economic Community becomes official later this month, and the regional group has already achieved a high degree of free trade in goods. Thailand, Singapore and four other ASEAN members have eliminated tariffs on 99% of the goods they trade with each other. Other countries are to catch up by 2018. The region could become the next factory of the world. But nontariff barriers persist. The AEC is meant to break these down, yet new ones are being erected. There is a gap between ideals and reality in freeing up the movement of people and liberalizing the service sector. Unlike the EU, the AEC will lack power to force members to implement agreed-on policies.
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  • Editor’s Picks / 24 March 2015 at 2:04 GMT

    Road map needed to achieve dream of ASEAN integration

    Nikkei Asian Review
    At their upcoming summits, leaders of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations know they must create a new road map to realize the dream of an ASEAN Economic Community that extends beyond 2015. Progress has been made towards achieving the AEC. Goods have been flowing more freely than ever before in the 10-member bloc as tariffs have been virtually abolished. However, the agenda to foster deep integration remains unfinished. In transport facilitation, foreign direct investment, the services trade and trade disputes, more work needs to be done. So the target to implement the AEC by the end of 2015 might be missed. As regional leaders know, reforming ASEAN institutions is critical.
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  • Editor’s Picks / 18 March 2015 at 3:14 GMT

    Asian governments in push to reach unbanked masses

    Business Spectator
    Some 60% of adults in developing countries do not have bank accounts, compared with only 11% in high-income economies. Despite Asia’s economic rise, there are masses of “unbanked” citizens in India, China and Myanmar. Leaving billions of people out of mainstream finance is economically costly. Across Asia, governments are trying to widen access to financial services, from using mobile technology for transfers to allowing shops to take deposits in remote areas. In India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has ordered state banks to open 125 million bank accounts for the poor. The upside to the banking push is that formal banking helps channel idle savings to productive investments.
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  • Editor’s Picks / 06 January 2015 at 0:07 GMT

    Indonesia top choice in ASEAN for foreign investors

    Nikkei Asian Review
    Indonesia ranks in top spot among the ASEAN nations as a foreign investment destination, according to a recent Nikkei Veritas investor survey. It's not hard to see why the resources-rich southeast Asian nation appeals to investors, given its large, working age population. About 250 million people call Indonesia home, and their median age is just 20 something. Another attraction is Indonesia's popular new president, Joko Widodo. Jokowi, as he is known locally, is determined to defy vested interests and carry out important reforms, such as reducing the crushing fuel subsidy burden to allow for spending on the vital updating of infrastructure. Other nations that appeal to foreign investors include Myanmar, which is due to open up its first world-class industrial zone shortly. The Yangon stock exchange is due to start up later this year as well.
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