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This is Why ASEAN’s Frontier Markets Matter


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Wed, 28 Jun. 2017

It was an early start in London on the 28 June for our UKABC breakfast briefing on ASEAN’s “Frontier Markets”. Exporters are quick to think of Singapore and Thailand, but what of Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam (CLMV)?

Chris Pook, Southeast Asian Regional Director for the Department for International Trade (DIT), introduced the event with an ASEAN overview, highlighting the help available from the UK government for UK companies looking to tap into the massive infrastructure projects and education needs in this developing region. This ranged from using DIT to access information about High-Value Campaigns, the Prosperity Fund, and UK Export Finance (UKEF) – all housed in one website: GREAT.gov.uk.

This was followed by Ramon Bruesseler from the European Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Laos, providing an economic overview with his ‘Top 10 facts’ and a ‘Top 5 reasons to invest’. There are massive development projects underway, in particular in electricity generation and hydropower, but Ramon explained you need patience to do business in Laos and also ‘boots on the ground’.

Next was a discussion of navigating the legal and tax structures in the area, presented by Jack Sheehan and William Greenlee from DFDL, based in ASEAN. Perhaps the biggest takeaway was for companies to consider the tax incentives to set up an office in Thailand or Singapore when investing in CLMV.

With attendees from UK businesses of varying experience in the region and staff from relevant embassies, networking discussions both before and after the presentations overran – a sure sign of a successful event and enthusiasm for CLMV going forward.

Want to find out more? Why not contact our ASEAN Export Specialists? Details available here.

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