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January Newsletter: APAC Economic Development, Trade & Investment

Dear Friends & Colleagues,

After the festive break and New Year 2023, we are delighted to share the key news, reports & resources for governments and business leaders to bring you back up to speed to hit the ground running in the Asia Pacific region. It’s been one hell of a year but let me just say that 2023 is going to be a historic year for KW Group in supporting economic development, trade & investment in APAC! So many exciting developments in the works.

HEADLINES: 6 Things To Know About Trade This Month | Asia Pacific FDI Trends 2023 | Why IPAs Need To Expand KPIs | Trade & Investment Outlook 2023 | WAIPA APAC IPAs Investment Conference: Speakers | Trade Agreements in Asia 2023 | GSK, Sanofi, Takeda Partnership, Singapore | Indonesia Ratifies RCEP | Malaysia On Strong Footing To Attract Quality Investments | Philippines Invests In Rail Infrastructure & More.....

FDI to and from the Asia-Pacific region has remained resilient in 2022 despite multifaceted crises globally and regionally. Learn more about the 2022 #asiapacific #fdi trends in the latest edition of the United Nations ESCAP report

Southeast Asia has moved on from the challenges of Covid-19 and is fast re-emerging as a region that is enjoying rapid economic growth, with its rising living standards driven by substantial levels of inward investment. To celebrate its progress, a tenth edition of Investing in ASEAN has been published by Allurentis.


As the world acknowledges the real threat of global recession, where and how a company should invest has never been more challenging. General counsel hold the keys to unlocking opportunity, and more than ever are relied upon for sound advice. There are many positives, but market knowledge is paramount in an insecure world.

The production partnership is through the Biologics Pharma Innovation Programme Singapore (BioPIPS), which is a consortium started by A*STAR with support from the Singapore Economic Development Board.

The first major in-person event for WAIPA in the Asia-Pacific region in 2023, participation will be open to all international and regional members from the Investment Promotion Communities. WAIPA will be supporting the program with several events and workshops, for the investment promotion community including the first Asia-Pacific WAIPA IPAs Conference, Asia-Pacific announcement of the WAIPA-OCO Global Innovation Index Report as well as capacity building workshops (Pro-active investment, Digital FDI and more). Register & Program: Regional Advisor APAC, WAIPA

Top stories: Global goods trade growth expected to slow; US-EU tensions over clean-tech subsidies; WTO champions green trade; Australia passes free trade agreements.

The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) Agreement entered into force for Indonesia on 2 January. The preferential tariffs under the agreement can now be utilised by the private sector who are exporting to and/or importing from Indonesia.

Malaysia’s economy is on a strong footing to attract quality investments, said International Trade and Industry Minister, Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Abdul Aziz.

In an interview with CNBC this morning, he said that although challenges still remain due to global economic uncertainties, China’s move to reopen its borders next week bodes well for Malaysia, as China is the nation’s largest trading partner.

Companies are flocking to the Middle East to raise capital just as they did in 2008. But funds say they are being more strategic about investments

FDI Intelligence: While the global economy is facing a challenging outlook, geopolitical fragmentation and soaring protectionism are creating regional breakaways from this main narrative.

Thanks to rising commodity prices in some areas, and a strong reform cycle in others, countries from the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) — as well as Asia’s rising economic powerhouse, India — are expected to carry the strongest economic and investment momentum into the new year

Welcome to The World Ahead 2023, our guide to the coming year. Our correspondents and outside experts consider the interlocking challenges facing the world: the war in Ukraine, high food and fuel prices, the fight against inflation, the transition to renewable energy, and China’s uncertain post-pandemic path.

Amid escalating tensions between the world’s two great powers, Asian nations have found themselves in increasingly difficult positions, having to make policy decisions that might tilt political equilibrium toward one hegemon or the other.

Booming Chinese family offices recruit top bankers. Financial institutions expect to lose ‘whole teams’ to private funds that will increasingly resemble hedge funds

With the government moving full speed ahead with the construction of a new railway network, supported by Asian Development Bank (ADB), that will transform travel in the country.

In a global economy facing a protracted period of weak growth and high inflation, Southeast Asia is a rare reason for optimism, with strong fundamentals, accelerating growth and a bright future. By Surendra Rosha, co-chief executive of HSBC Asia-Pacific

RESOURCES & REPORTS: Our monthly summary of the key resources and reports that matter – follow the links to download for free.

Investment promotion agencies (IPAs) can contribute a tremendous amount to the society and the location they represent. Besides their core mandate and KPI of attracting capital and creating employment, they are increasingly being asked to contribute to a wider range of economic and social objectives, including innovation, digitalisation, regional development, inclusiveness, sustainability and talent attraction.

The Asia-Pacific region continues to be the largest contributor to the worldwide build-up of preferential trade agreements (PTAs), accounting for about half of PTAs worldwide. PTAs have become bigger, deeper, more digital and increasingly supportive of sustainable development, with the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) exemplifying these trends.

In many ways, 2022 has been a year the world will never forget. Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine has sent shockwaves through a global economy already struggling to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic.

Trade of East Asian economies has shown resilience, South-South trade has lagged during Q3 2022.

Focusing on ways to unlock women’s potential in the digital economy through actions like advocating for women digital entrepreneurs and improving women’s access to finance, among several other aspects.

UPCOMING EVENTS 2023: A quick snapshot of some of the essential events to add to your diaries in 2023, we look forward to meeting you at many of them in person!

· Asian Financial Forum, 11-12 January, Hong Kong:

· World Economic Forum Annual Meeting, 16-20 Jan, Davos:

· WEF Annual Meeting Affiliate Session: Promoting Investment in SDGs: Repurposing Capital (WAIPA):

· International Economic Development Council, Leadership Summit, Jan 29-31, Tucson Arizona

· Arab Health, 30 Jan – 2 Feb, Dubai, UAE

· WAIPA Asia Pacific IPAs Investment Conference, 21-23 February, UN Conference Centre, Bangkok, Thailand - For details email:

· UNESCAP Trade, Investment & Innovation Week, 22-24 February, Bangkok, Thailand - For details email:

· 2023 SelectUSA Investment Summit, 1-4 May, National Harbor, Maryland, USA

· Annual Investment Meeting (AIM), 8-10 May, Abu Dhabi, UAE

Annually we support over 100+ international businesses, governments, donors, and trade organizations to deliver Asia-Pacific projects through our networks and business communities.

​We are trusted regional advisors, commentators, and partners on economic development, foreign direct investment (FDI), investment promotion, trade, export, policy, alliances, research, strategy, capacity building & market access.

Feel free to reach out for details


- FDI & Investment Promotion - Trade, Export & Market Access Programs - Research, Policy & Strategy Development - Capacity Building


Warm Regards, Andrew Keable

Managing Director, KW Group & Regional Advisor Asia Pacific, World Association of Investment Promotion Agencies (WAIPA)

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