Southeast Asia remains FDI bright spot, led by Singapore

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By: Business World

Foreign direct investment (FDI) in Southeast Asia continued to grow in 2019 even as global investment flows remained flat, according to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development Investment Trends Monitor.

Southeast Asia registered FDI growth of 19% to $177 billion in 2019, which was described as the growth engine of the region.

Globally, FDI fell 1% to $1.39 trillion, which the report attributes to weaker macroeconomic performance and investor uncertainty due to trade tensions.

Singapore attracted the most FDI in Southeast Asia, with its FDI intake rising 42% to $110 billion led by the information and communications sector.

FDI to Indonesia grew 12% to $24 billion, led by wholesale and retail trade and manufacturing.

The Philippines on the other hand continues to face challenges that threaten the country’s attractiveness to investors, such as proposals to rationalize tax incentives and the threat of calamities, according to Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) Director General Charito B. Plaza.


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