Southeast Asia important market for investment

Singapore – Singapore remains the most attractive market in the world for investment in infrastructure, while Southeast Asia is an important regional market, according to a latest report.

The findings of the global infrastructure investment index report released by the consultancy firm Arcadis showed that Singapore’ s integrated strategic plan linking infrastructure planning with business and social requirements helped retain its top position as a market for infrastructure investment. The population has been predicted to grow from 5.5 million to 7 million by 2030.

“However … Singapore is self-sufficient in financing and managing its infrastructure projects so the opportunities for funds may lie in managing existing assets to ensure they are as productive as possible,” said Richard Warburton, head of infrastructure for Asia at Arcadis.

Investors are continuing to focus on more commercial real estate investment to capitalize on Singapore’s ongoing growth, the report said.

The index ranks 41 countries and regions by their attractiveness to investors in infrastructure, based on factors including the ease of doing business in each market, tax rates, gross domestic product per capita, government policy, the quality of the existing infrastructure and the availability of debt finance.

Malaysia is the second in Asia Pacific, and seventh globally, respectively. Australia, the third-ranked country in Asia Pacific, is the ninth globally. Japan and China, the fourth and fifth-placed in Asia Pacific, came in the 15th and 17th places in the global rankings, respectively.

Indonesia is the 23rd globally, and the eighth in the Asia Pacific. India, the ninth-placed in Asia Pacific, is the 25th globally.

Emerging markets in South East Asia such as Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines are trying to improve their business environment for foreign investment through infrastructure development. Due to the lack of funding, they offer more opportunities for investors in infrastructure, the report said.

“A key differential that we have seen in Asian markets like Singapore is that they have clear integrated strategies that tie the infrastructure development plans to business and economic objectives,” Warburton said.