1. ASEAN is an Economic Powerhouse
If we ranked ASEAN as a country, it would be considered as the 7th largest economy in the world. The collective GDP is amounted to $2.4 trillion and is projected to become the 4th largest economy by 2050.
ASEAN is making tremendous efforts in transformation and improvements to productivity has driven GDP growth. Home to nearly 600 million people, it has a larger population (roughly 65% below aged 35) than North America or European Union and its labor force is ranked 3rd in the world, just behind China and India.
2. Rising Consumer Demand
ASEAN has outdone the rest of the world on growth in GDP per capita since the late 1970s, with some of member states growing at unprecedented pace: Vietnam, for example, double its per capita GDP within a short period of 11 years. The growth also symbolized the decline in extreme poverty where 14% of the population fell below the international poverty line of $1.25 per day in 2000 has since decreased to 3% in 2013.
More than 67 million ASEAN households are considered to be part of the consumer class, where their incomes outpaced the level at which they can make significant purchases focus on modern retail and leisure activities. This data is set to double to 125 million households by 2025.
3. Trade Catalyst
The region is dubbed as the 4th largest exporting powerhouse in the world and accounts for 7% of the global exports. With member states diversified their manufacturing products: Singapore & Malaysia are forerunner in exporting electronics, and Vietnam’s sweet spot is in textiles and apparel. In addition, Indonesia is a major player when comes to exportation of palm oil and 2nd-largest producer of cocoa and tin.
Multiple free trade zones are also established within the member states and have further enhance the growth potential in exportation. Further on, the region is well connected by low-budget airlines like Airasia or Jetstar Asia. By 2025, more than half of the world’s consuming class will live within a five-hour flight of Myanmar.
- Batam Free Trade Zone (Singapore–Indonesia)
- Southern Regional Industrial Estate (Thailand)
- Tanjung Emas Export Processing Zone (Indonesia)
- Port Klang Free Zone (Malaysia)
- Thilawa Special Economic Zone (Myanmar)
- Tan Thuan Export Processing Zone (Vietnam)