South East Asia

Date
2023-02-03

The Department of Finance welcomed the US Federal Reserve’s “softer” interest rate hike while forecasting that inflation in the Philippines has reached its long-awaited peak. This was what Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno told the private sector in a Friday briefing organized by the Makati Business Club.... More Via philstar.com


Takings at the till climbed at a faster pace in December, rising 7.4 per cent year on year, according to figures released by the Department of Statistics on Friday. This was better than the revised 6.5 per cent rise in November, which had eased from the double-digit growth in the previous seven consecutive months. The high growth in those months was fuelled by tourist spending and shoppers buying big-ticket items ahead of the goods and …


2023-02-02

Gobi Partners, an interconnected Pan-Asian venture capital firm with US$1.5 billion (RM6.5 billion) in assets under management, has onboarded four more promising startups to help spur the growth of Malaysian entrepreneurs. The four firms being onboarded to Gobi Superseed II Fund (Gobi SSII Fund) are Islamic-themed streaming service Durioo+, e-commerce marketplace Lapasar, earned wage access provider Paywatch and online investing platform pitchIN.…


2023-02-02

PRESIDENT Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. is expected to sign seven key bilateral deals covering infrastructure, defense, and tourism, among others, during his trip to Japan next week. Mr. Marcos’ working visit from Feb. 8 to 12 also gives the Philippines a chance to further boost exports to Japan, Foreign Affairs Assistant Secretary for Asia and Pacific Affairs Nathaniel Imperial told a news briefing...... More https://bit.ly/3l1NTFQ Vi…


SINGAPORE’S property market is bracing for surging demand from Chinese buyers as the world’s second-largest economy reopens. Real estate agencies in the city-state have seen more inquiries from mainland Chinese, with industry watcher OrangeTee & Tie noting a 10 per cent to 15 per cent increase in January since Beijing announced it was ending three years of global isolation. The border reopening has also seen a spike in queries abo…


According to the General Statistics Office (GSO), Vietnam lured $1.69 billion in foreign direct investment (FDI) as of January 20 this year, a year-on-year decrease of 19.8 per cent. There were 153 newly-registered projects totalling $1.2 billion, up 48.5 per cent in quantity and 3.1 times in value against last year's January....


2023-02-01

Local factories opened the year strong, with output soaring to a 7-month high as the economy’s reopening brightened the sector’s prospects.  A survey of around 400 manufacturers in the country found that the Philippines’ Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI), a gauge of manufacturing output, grew 53.5 in January from 53.1 in December, S&P Global said in a report on Wednesday..... More https://bit.ly/3kXiHYk Via ph…


Local power producer YTL PowerSeraya will import electricity on a commercial basis from Malaysia for the first time, the company announced on Monday. YTL PowerSeraya will purchase 100 megawatts (MW) of electricity over two years from TNB Power Generation’s gas-fired plant in Pasir Gudang, Johor....


But strengthening baht could make sales in 2023 more challengingThailand exported 7.69 million tonnes of rice in 2022, up 22.1% fryear earlier, the Ministry of Commerce said on Tuesday. The exports exceeded a target of 7.5 million tonnes with top markIraq, South Africa, China and the United States, it said in a statement https://www.bangkokpost.com/business/2495600/2022-rice-exports-beat-target.


2023-01-31

Perusahaan Otomobil Kedua Sdn Bhd (Perodua) is planning to maximise its production and sales to 330,000 and 314,000 units this year, on the back of outstanding orders carried forward from last year. The plans would also be supported by continued demand for its vehicles this year..... More https://bit.ly/3HTfFO1 Via nst.com.my


PASSENGER traffic in Changi Airport recorded a high in December last year with 4.6 million movements, reaching 72 per cent of pre-pandemic traffic levels in 2019.  More than 1.1 million passengers were handled from Dec 12 to Dec 18, or 82 per cent of the weekly average in 2019, making it the busiest week of the year.....


2023-01-31

The past three years spent in the Covid-19 pandemic has brought to our attention just how essential Singapore’s frontline workers are. From the cleaners who sanitise our daily work environment to the retail and food services workers who keep our stores and restaurants running, these occupations were critical roles in the frontline that enabled us to tide through the pandemic. A whole-of-society movement is needed to uplift lower-wage worker…


Sea Limited, Singapore’s largest consumer Internet company, has committed to expanding its investments in Malaysia, creating more than 2,000 jobs in the process. This was announced by Malaysia’s Minister of International Trade and Industry Tengku Zafrul Aziz during his official visit to Shopee’s headquarters in Singapore on Sunday. The e-commerce platform is owned by Sea....


2023-01-29

Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) has signed two project development agreements with ExxonMobil Exploration and Production Malaysia Inc to jointly pursue carbon capture and storage (CCS) activation projects in Malaysia. Under the agreements, both parties will define the following steps, including the maturation of technical scopes for the CCS value chain and evaluating the identified fields for carbon dioxide storage utilisation in enabling the C…


2023-01-29

Indonesia, the world’s largest seaweed exporter, is considering the commodity’s use in producing bio-crude to help reduce the country’s reliance on costly imported crude. Though the potential for seaweed-based biofuel is huge, much still needs to be done to turn the idea into reality.Click to read: https://www.thejakartapost.com/business/2023/01/27/funding-research-hamper-indonesias-seaweed-potential-for-biofuel.html.


Island's tourism sector buoyed by news of three more planned visits over the next monthAnother cruise ship with about 3,000 passengers and crew arrived at Koh Samui for a one-dwas expected to generate 10 million baht for the resort island. https://www.bangkokpost.com/business/2493480/another-cruise-ship-with-3-000-aboard-calls-at-samui


The pen may be mightier than the sword, but this does not extend to malicious people who write “poison pen” e-mails to malign others. A High Court ruling in 2022, which ordered a whistle-blower to pay $50,000 to a former senior colleague over e-mails sent to the firm’s boss that contained unproven and defamatory allegations, should serve as a cautionary tale....


 Viettel is the most valuable telecoms brand in Southeast Asia and the 17th in the world, according to the latest Brand Finance Global 500.At the 234th position globally, Viettel is the only brand of Vietnam and the only telecoms one of Southeast Asia listed in the 2023 rankings....


Local retailer Mustafa’s, which operates Mustafa Centre in Syed Alwi Road, will open its first department store in Malaysia in a shopping mall in Johor Bahru, mall owner Capital World announced on Friday. Singapore-listed Capital World said in a bourse filing that it will sell most of the retail space at its 11-storey Capital City Mall in Tampoi to Mustafa’s for RM368 million (S$113.7 million).....


Rackets damage the country's image, say tourism industry leadersTourism operators have expressed frustration over repeated scaninvolving Thai police after they were accused of extorting a Taiwaactress during her trip to the country. The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) urged an investigation issue to evaluate its impact on the country.... https://www.bangkokpost.com/business/2492329/operators-exasperated-by-police-scams


2023-01-27

Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) reached a record high of 6.8 million passengers in December 2022 for monthly passenger movements in all airport operations in Malaysia. The airport operator said the year-end holiday season contributed a significant 31 per cent increase from the preceding month, enabling MAHB to reach 50 per cent of 2019 levels for its Malaysian operations.... More https://bit.ly/3Jp216p Via nst.com.my


2023-01-27

The digital payment industry grew steadily last year, however, the growth reflects competitive immaturity, the solution for which lies in consolidation, analysts have suggested. Indonesia Financial Group senior research associate Ibrahim Kholilul Rohman said the industry was immature in the sense that digital service providers were competing with each other while simultaneously taking on conventional banks that were setting up digital services of…


The islandwide office vacancy rate falls to 11.3 per cent as at the end of Q4 2022, from 11.7 per cent as at end-Q3 2022 RENTALS of office space in Singapore’s central region rose 5.1 per cent in the fourth quarter of last year over the previous quarter. This is a bigger gain than the 2.1 per cent quarter-on-quarter (qoq) rise in Q3 2022.....


AMID robust tourism and travel spending recovery across all of Las Vegas Sands’ (LVS) markets, its integrated resort Marina Bay Sands (MBS) reported record levels of performance in both mass gaming and retail revenue for the fourth quarter ended Dec 31, 2022.  MBS’ net revenue contribution nearly doubled in Q4 2022, up to US$682 million from US$368 million in the same period in the year before....


"I'm a believer in building one's sense of self, because life puts us in numerous situations where a strong sense of self-worth becomes our best defense against feeling lost, insecure, or stuck." When I asked Rissa Mananquil Trillo to recall three situations that defined her path in business, I certainly did not expect that this United Nations (UN) Women advocate, author, and entrepreneur, who is regarded as a pioneer for homegrown beauty busines…


Core consumer prices in Singapore remained stubbornly unchanged for three straight months on the back of higher costs for food and services ahead of the Lunar New Year and a tax hike, putting a dampener on hopes they would ease more quickly. Economists believe this signals that taming core inflation will remain challenging this year, even as price rises are expected to cool further.....


2023-01-24

Several Italian companies have expressed interest to invest in Malaysia, given the country's strategic position as a gateway to Asean and Asia Pacific, said the Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA). The interest, following a visit led by International Trade and Industry Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Abdul Aziz, might lead to potential foreign direct investments (FDIs) of RM3.25 billion, MIDA added..... More https://bit.ly/3H…


2023-01-24

A plan to ban the export of copper concentrate starting in June has sparked concern among businesses over the readiness of domestic industries to absorb the product. Indonesia is one of the world’s top exporters of copper concentrate, a partially processed copper ore that requires further work to increase its purity.... More Via thejakartapost.com  


Consumers in Singapore could see some of their Chinese New Year (CNY) purchases delayed in transit as a result of labour shortages at China’s ports and factories over the festive season. However, the high costs that have plagued the global economy since the pandemic started could abate as the year progresses, potentially leading to cheaper goods, industry players said....


Demand for loans strong amid recoveryThe trend of rising interest rates supported net profit growth among Thai banks last year, strong demand for loans in line with the country's economic recovery..... https://www.bangkokpost.com/business/2488942/rising-rates-sustain-gains-in-banks-profits


Vietnam's trade surplus with Americas exceeds $100 billion For the first time ever, the trade surplus with the Americas has surpassed $100 billion, according to the figures. The year 2023 will continue to see challenges such as geopolitical conflicts, trade tensions, high inflation, and the risk of anti-dumping duties on Vietnam's export products, according to deputy Minister Do Thang Hai.....


2023-01-23

The Philippine economy grew at a faster rate last year with the further lifting of strict COVID-19 quarantine and lockdown protocols, a survey of leading bank economists showed. Michael Ricafort, chief economist at Rizal Commercial Banking Corp., said the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) grew by 7.8 percent last year after expanding by eight percent in the fourth quarter.... More https://bit.ly/3Xwbi0C Via philstar.com


SPH Media Trust (SMT) will reassess its methodology for reporting of circulation data after an internal review found that circulation data had been overstated, the company said in a statement on Friday (Jan 20). Before 2019, the company said that circulation data in previous Singapore Press Holdings Ltd (SPHL) annual reports followed rules set by the Audit Bureau of Media Consumption Singapore (ABC)....


Malaysia’s central bank maintained the overnight policy rate (OPR) at 2.75 per cent on Thursday (Jan 19), surprising economists who had anticipated yet another hike of 25 basis points (bps). They are now split on whether this is a temporary pause or an end to the hiking cycle. The central bank said the decision would allow the country’s Monetary Policy Committee to assess the impact of the cumulative past OPR adjustments, given the la…


Two multinational firms have pledged to invest in the Philippines during their meeting with President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. on the sidelines of the ongoing 2023 World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland. In a statement issued last Thursday, the Presidential Communication Office (PCO) said Morgan Stanley Asia Pacific Chairman Gokul Laroia had committed to set up an office in Manila....


2023-01-22

Thailand’s recovery is gaining momentum on the back of strengthening domestic demand and a stronger rebound in tourist arrivals. However, the weakening global economy and high inflation pose major headwinds to its prospects. As fiscal and monetary policy support are gradually withdrawn, policymakers will need to prioritize its post-pandemic recovery efforts and deal with the long-term challenges posed by the economic scars, rapidly aging po…


Vietnam’s GDP growth in 2023 has been adjusted upward to 6.8% in the ASEAN+3 Macroeconomic Research Office (AMRO)’s January Update, up from 6.5% in its October report. This is in contrast to its downward projection for most economies in ASEAN+3.....


Archipelagic Indonesia should upgrade thousands of its old vessels, and also open up new shipping routes for export, according to the country’s board of trade. The Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Kadin) recently said that there is still much room for improvement in the country’s maritime transport. ....


 A spacious 1,300 square foot freehold property, located just a stone’s throw from the Orchard shopping district, is selling for $1.3 million or $1,000 per square foot (psf). The deal may seem too good to be true, until you arrive at the property at Hoot Kiam Mansion and realise that the unit is in an old building with no lift, swimming pool or security guards.....


2023-01-21

As the Lunar New Year period kicks off from January 22 to February 5, passengers can embrace the luck and abundance of the season with curated menus in Emirates lounges in Dubai, Singapore and Bangkok, blockbuster movies onboard in Mandarin, Cantonese and Vietnamese, and special offers from EmiratesRED duty free shopping. In the seven Emirates Lounges in Dubai on January 22, the first day of the Lunar New Year, breakfast treats will be served in …


2023-01-21

Philippine President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. has approved zero tariff on electric vehicles  to encourage consumers to use “cleaner and greener” cars.  The tariff removal will run for five years, according to a copy of Executive Order No. 12 dated Jan. 13 sent by the presidential palace. Electric vehicles will be slapped a 30% tariff after five years.... More https://bit.ly/3HloD6d Via bworldonline.com


2023-01-21

IMB Group Holdings Bhd's 94.83 per cent indirectly held subsidiary, CIMB Thai Bank PCL saw net profit soar to 3.03 billion baht for the full financial year ended Dec 31, 2022 (FY2022), an increase of 24.3 per cent or 592.5 million baht versus FY2021 (100 Thai baht: RM13.07). In a filing with Bursa Malaysia today, CIMB Thai Bank president and chief executive officer Paul Wong Chee Kin said the improvement was mainly attributed to better cost contr…


Singapore’s Zilingo is set to enter liquidation, capping a months-long crisis that shocked Asia’s technology and start-up industries. The fashion tech company’s board appointed EY Corporate Services as provisional liquidator, sources familiar with the matter said, asking not to be named as the matter is private....


The merchandise trade volume between Cambodia and Indonesia totalled $948.533 million in 2022, surging by 48.27 per cent over a year earlier, with Cambodian imports constituting a 96.12 per cent share, inching up by 1.08 percentage points on a yearly basis, according to the General Department of Customs and Excise (GDCE). In 2022, Cambodian goods exports to and imports from Indonesia amounted to $36.839 million and $911.694 million, respectively,…


Vietnam’s export of agro-forestry-aquatic products hit a record revenue of over 53.22 billion USD last year, up 9.3%, including nearly 11 billion USD from aquatic products.  Statistics showed that total agricultural production value went up 3.33% while the rate of forest coverage hit 42.02%. Along with this, over 73% of communes were recognised as new-style rural areas under criteria set by the government.…


2023-01-20

Travelers planning to go out of town for the summer season should start booking their flights in February, as airlines will reduce their ticket prices in line with the government order to cut fuel surcharge. Philippine Airlines (PAL), Cebu Pacific and AirAsia Philippines all confirmed to The STAR that they will comply with the government’s order to slash fuel surcharge to Level 6 in February..... More https://bit.ly/3D1zy2n Via philsta…


Retail rents in Singapore’s prime shopping belt continued to recover in the fourth quarter of 2022, as travel and leisure demand bounced back. In a report out on Thursday, Edmund Tie said landlords of prime first-storey retail space in the Orchard Road area hiked their rents 7.4 per cent year on year to $39.20 per square foot per month (psf/pm) in Q4 – making for the strongest year-on-year growth for the whole of 2022.....


Demand is soaring for oil storage tanks in Singapore, in a sign that a flood of Russian fuel is being blended and re-exported globally. Tank space in the city-state is being snapped up due to a rise in interest and profits from mixing cheap fuel supplies from Russia with shipments from other sources, according to an executive from a tank operator and a consultant who advises traders on the matter. This process can help to obscure the cargoes&rsqu…