On the whole, across emerging and developing Asia, low international prices for oil and other key commodities are supporting growth, but a sharp price reversal could undermine the outlook and hurt companies and consumers.
The rise of the middle class in emerging markets has captured the enthusiasm of global businesses. In targeting emerging middle class consumers, the most successful companies are those which can fully assess the middle class potential.
China’s strong Q2 figures, with real GDP growth coming in at 7.0% year-on-year - above most analysts’ estimates - should not be taken at face value. Quite apart from the usual debates over the accuracy of the figures, much of the growth stemmed from short-term stimulus measures.
Rising middle-class spending in emerging economies will create wide-ranging opportunities, but as the patterns of middle-class spending growth are diverse, companies will need to fully understand the target market and adapt their business strategies accordingly.
China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam are amongst Emerging Asia’s most-established consumer markets. Between them they accounted for 57% of consumer spending in Asia-Pacific in 2014 but by 2030 this proportion will increase to 70%.
With the world’s highest life expectancy and one of the lowest birth rates, Japan is facing serious challenges due to its rapidly ageing population. Japanese in major cities age even faster than the country overall.
The Saudi Arabian retailing market was worth SAR374 billion in 2013, 12% growth from the previous year, according to Euromonitor International. A large part of this interest comes from the government’s desire to diversify beyond the oil industry.