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US Firms Optimistic About Asean Outlook

US Firms Optimistic About Asean OutlookUS Firms Optimistic About Asean Outlook

US companies are optimistic about the growth outlook and investment opportunities in Asean as businesses see solid growth in domestic consumption, according to a survey.

A special Asean 50th anniversary edition of the 2018 Asean Business Outlook Survey revealed that 56% of US companies’ senior executives based in the region expected their profits to increase this year over that of last year, while 74% expected higher profits in 2018, Bernama reported.

It said 58% of the companies reported that Asean markets had become more important for their companies’ global bottom lines for the past two years, and 62% said that their level of trade and investment in Asean increased during the period.

“Over the next five years, 80% (of them) expect that their level of trade and investment in Asean will increase,” said the survey which was released by the American Malaysian Chamber of Commerce, the US Chamber of Commerce and the American Chamber of Commerce in Singapore.

Commenting on the survey, AMCHAM Malaysia executive director Siobhan Das said Malaysia continued to be an important US trading partner and serve, not only as a major US investment destination, but also a critical part of many global supply chains.

The show must go on for American trade and investment in Asean, even with the United States pulling out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement earlier this year, said Singapore Minister for Trade and Industry Lim Hng Kiang.

Lim told the gathering: “Particularly in this increasingly digitalized global environment, we will need to work together to leverage our strengths, learn from each other’s best practices and streamline our regulatory regimes to enhance the opportunities for business.”

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