Public Equities

Structural Themes Shaping the Opportunity in ASEAN Equities

February 2023 – 5 min read

Favorable demographics, combined with a number of unique investment themes, are creating a positive backdrop for ASEAN’s equity markets.

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is a unique investment region that primarily offers investors exposure to southeast Asian markets including Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Philippines and Vietnam. There are a number of supportive demographic trends that are driving ASEAN’s positive longer-term picture, which we believe have the potential to stimulate economic growth.

For one, ASEAN today has the third-largest aggregated population in the world, behind China and India. The region’s GDP was also among the fastest growing in the world in 2022, estimated at 5.5%.1 This large and relatively young population, and an increasingly wealthy middle class, are further contributors, and indeed already driving exciting changes in consumption patterns.

These demographics, combined with a number of investment themes unfolding in the region—from the evolution of consumption behaviors, to supply chain enhancements, to technological upgrades, to the green transition—are presenting compelling opportunities in ASEAN companies. While these themes remain nascent compared to both developed and emerging economies, their development will likely accelerate given the deeply integrated logistical networks across ASEAN—with the region perhaps set to closely follow the developmental roadmap of predecessors such as China, Korea and Japan.

structural-themes-shaping-map-web.jpgASEAN is an economic union of member states in Southeast Asia designed to target cooperation and accelerate economic growth. It includes some of the fastest-growing economies in the world, and features an estimated population of more than 650 million.

1. Source: Asian Development Bank. As of January 2023.

Want to read the full article?

View PDF

SooHai Lim, CFA

Head of Asia ex-China Equities

Tiebin Liu

Investment Manager, Asian Equities

The document is for informational purposes only and is not an offer or solicitation for the purchase or sale of any financial instrument or service. The material herein was prepared without any consideration of the investment objectives, financial situation or particular needs of anyone who may receive it. This document is not, and must not be treated as, investment advice, investment recommendations, or investment research.

In making an investment decision, prospective investors must rely on their own examination of the merits and risks involved and before making any investment decision, it is recommended that prospective investors seek independent investment, legal, tax, accounting or other professional advice as appropriate.

Unless otherwise mentioned, the views contained in this document are those of Barings. These views are made in good faith in relation to the facts known at the time of preparation and are subject to change without notice. Parts of this document may be based on information received from sources we believe to be reliable. Although every effort is taken to ensure that the information contained in this document is accurate, Barings makes no representation or warranty, express or implied, regarding the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information.

Any forecasts in this document are based upon Barings opinion of the market at the date of preparation and are subject to change without notice, dependent upon many factors. Any prediction, projection or forecast is not necessarily indicative of the future or likely performance. Any investment results, portfolio compositions and/or examples set forth in this document are provided for illustrative purposes only and are not indicative of any future investment results, future portfolio composition or investments. The composition, size of, and risks associated with an investment may differ substantially from any examples set forth in this document. No representation is made that an investment will be profitable or will not incur losses. Where appropriate, changes in the currency exchange rates may affect the value of investments.

Investment involves risks. Past performance is not a guide to future performance. Investors should not only base on this document alone to make investment decision.

This document is issued by Baring Asset Management (Asia) Limited. It has not been reviewed by the Securities and Futures Commission of Hong Kong.

Related Viewpoints