Business-Friendly and Economically Sound
The top countries to invest in around the globe change every year. This is especially true of the volatile emerging markets of Asia. During the 1990s Thailand went through a massive growth spurt and soon afterward Vietnam experienced a rapid progress phase that lasted through the 2000s. Even though both countries have slowed down in recent years, their economies are still rising by between 3% and 5% every year and they are still enjoying faster growth rates than most of the world. And the rest of Asia is looking even more positive. These three Asian countries are predicted to be the top investment destinations for 2018.
Not all Emerging Markets Have High Potential
While emerging markets may hold potentially lucrative investment potential, with every investment comes a level of risk – and all markets are not equal. Some years ago large asset managers were pushing all emerging markets under one umbrella, two of which are now facing economic recession (Russia and Brazil) and another which has just exited a major downturn (South Africa). Countries should be viewed independently and investments should be made based on individual potential. When taking this approach, three emerging markets in Asia stand out from the crowd; Malaysia, Cambodia and the Philippines. Let’s see why these countries are top performers.
Despite a generally strong economy, assets in Malaysia are greatly discounted. This is because the nation’s currency is lower than what it’s been in decades and because prime real estate is cheaper than anywhere else in Asia. It is also the only Asian country in which foreigners can purchase land on a freehold basis.
This tiny nation is one of the fastest growing countries in Asia despite being the least developed. Cambodia has a reputation for avoiding recession and has not slowed down at all consistently maintaining growth rates of over 7%. Investors from China are flocking to Cambodia where they are building hotels and railways and roads are being financed by the Japanese government. Because of lax ownership restrictions and accommodating business laws for foreigners, Cambodia is easier to navigate than other Asian countries.
Despite the negative press, the economy of this country remains strong while offering low taxes and business-friendly laws. With a GDP that rose by 6.9% over the past year and a large pool of tech-savvy, low-cost labor, the Philippines has become an investment destination for tech giants like Google and Microsoft. Other foreign investors like P&G, Nestle and Coca-Cola are also firmly established in this rapidly growing country.