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UKABC’s Digital Conversation on Southeast Asia Returns to Work


Southeast Asia’s economies are beginning to open up and get back to work after periods of lockdown. This discussion will explore what business needs to do to survive, what the new normal looks like and what companies need to do to resume operations.

This UKABC Digital Conversation is co-hosted with the ASEAN Business Advisory Council in partnership with ACCA. It will begin at 09.00 in the UK / 15.00 in Vietnam and Indonesia / 16.00 in China and Singapore on Wednesday, 24 June. It is free to attend, click on the registration link at bottom of page.

The ASEAN Business Advisory Council is the voice of business in Southeast Asia. The council, made up of representatives appointed by the Heads of State of each ASEAN country, provides formal recommendations to the ASEAN Leaders to promote trade and enhance economic integration and cooperation.


The coronavirus pandemic has impacted businesses of all sizes across the UK and Southeast Asia. As economies begin to execute their resumption plans, businesses need to prepare for a new normal and an understanding of the landscape they are operating in.

ACCA’s global COVID-19 survey sought to understand the business and financial implications on organisations, and the short to medium-term implications found useful insights on the business impact of the crisis.

Organisations large and small, in the public and private sectors, have expressed deep concerns about the impact of COVID-19 on their people, productivity and cash flow. The most severe impact is from cash flow hitting business viability, a particularly acute challenge for smaller organisations.

In ASEAN, close to 80% of organisations expect their revenue to fall, with 34% expecting the revenue fall to be more than 25%. Employee productivity and supply chain disruptions, disappearing demands from customers are some of the major business impacts survey respondents are facing.


Welcome remarks by co-hosts:

  • Baroness Neville-Rolfe DBE CMG, Chair – UKABC
  • Dr Doan Duy Khuong, Chair – ASEAN BAC

Scene setter by Jenny Gu, President ACCA and CEO Richemont China including highlights from the ACCA Global Survey findings.

What does business need to do to survive in the short term? What are the key steps for ‘resumption’ planning? What does business need to consider for the new normal?

 Panel discussion with:

  • Jenny Gu, President ACCA and CEO Richemont China
  • Jose Concepcion, CEO, RFM Corp and ASEAN BAC Member Philippines
  • Shinta Kamdani, CEO – Sintesa Group and Vice Chair KADIN Indonesia
  • Tony Cripps, CEO – HSBC Singapore

Survey findings fast facts

  • In ASEAN, 49% very likely to experience a loss while 45% of listed companies are expecting to make a loss in this current financial year.
  • Almost 50% of respondents either rated their business continuity programmes as ineffective or did not have one in place.
  • Most respondents have prioritised the health and safety of people first – employees, customers and other partners.
  • Top measures being considered to include:
    • Adjustments to remuneration and employment models
    • Negotiating with banks and debt providers on debt service repayment obligations
    • Mitigating cashflow impact by engaging with customers and suppliers

Further reading

COVID-19 Global Survey: Inside Business Impacts and Responses.

ACCA COVID-19 resources hub.

ACCA practical steps for organisations responding to the crisis.

What can we expect from the new normal at work? Michael Page


Read More


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