Asia-Pacific businesses 'still eyeing investments'

Mr Teo (above) said business leaders see potential in untapped markets opened up by new technology.
Mr Teo (above) said business leaders see potential in untapped markets opened up by new technology.

LIMA (Peru) • The business community in the Asia-Pacific is still seeking investment opportunities even as the world economy slows, Singapore Business Federation chairman Teo Siong Seng said on Friday.

Business leaders he spoke to during the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) forum's CEO Summit said they see growth in untapped markets opened up by new technology.

Latin American markets are also changing, he said, citing how the new government in Peru is trying to tweak its regulations to encourage investment and trade.

And while Chile's economy has slowed down due to falling commodity prices, businessmen there said the situation is im- proving, he added.

During his time in Latin America, Mr Teo said he also urged businessmen there to pursue opportunities in South-east Asia as the region holds ample resources and a big market.

The general sentiment among businesses is that there are still prospects going forward, he told Singapore reporters after attending one forum at the Apec CEO Summit that Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong spoke at. "Most importantly, we must continue to have an open economy with integration and cooperation," Mr Teo said.

Singapore's youth delegation to the summit also met PM Lee on Friday. They recounted their interactions with young people from other Apec economies, discussed how youth view politics, and talked about the recent turn against free trade by segments of the developed world.

One of the participants was Ms Grace Ann Chia, 22, a geography major who graduated from the National University of Singapore this year.

She said it was an eye-opener to hear about how young people around the world engage with politics, from simply reading political messages on social media to taking part in street protests.

Chong Zi Liang

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on November 20, 2016, with the headline 'Asia-Pacific businesses 'still eyeing investments''. Print Edition | Subscribe