Asia gains limellght amid U.S.-China trade tension

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330 delegates from more than 12 countries across Asia and the US are meeting in Kuala Lumpur examining the challenges of Asia for US companies.

They are leading business, government, diplomatic and academic figures participating in the Asia Pacific Council of American Chambers of Commerce business summit at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre.

Summit organiser and Executive Director of the American Malaysian Chamber of Commerce, Siobhan Das said: “The event demonstrates just how serious US business views its engagement with Asia.”

The President of the American Malaysian Chamber of Commerce Ramzi Toubassy, the host of the APCAC 2018 event, says it’s clear that despite current trade tensions between China and the United States, Asia is set to dominate the international economy in a matter of years.

“Asia’s share of global GDP is expected to grow from 30% in 2016 to more than 50% by 2050.

“As we have said many times, Asia matters to the US and the US matters to Asia – the business and trade relationship is long-standing and an incredibly important one,” Mr Toubassy said.

One of the Summit’s key speakers, PwC Malaysia Managing Partner Sridharan Nair, said by 2050 China will be the world’s biggest economy, followed by India with Indonesia the world’s fourth-largest economy.

“Our projections indicate that Southeast Asia will continue to grow in importance given its strategic geographical location – it will serve as an economic platform for the Asia Pacific and the rest of the world,” said Nair.

Southeast Asia is already capturing high value-added US investments.  

While there’s been a 33% increase in mining, oil and gas extraction investment between 2010 and 2016, there has been an 84% increase in manufacturing and a 131% increase in services investment during the same period. 

The theme of this year’s summit is Charting a Bold Future: US Businesses in the Asian Century.