Australian businesses are increasingly favouring Asia for growth opportunities amid a decline in US and European economic influence, according to a new global report.
As Ashurst announced yesterday its plans to strengthen its practice in the Asia-Pacific region through a merger with Blake Dawson, new research published by Allen & Overy has revealed that 79 per cent of Australian executives believe the Asia-Pacific region's economic influence is rising above its global counterparts.
According to the survey of 1000 global business leaders in 19 countries, Australian businesses view China as the top growth opportunity (43%), followed by India (36%) and the US (30%).
The research also revealed that Australia is in the top ten target markets offering the best growth opportunities for businesses globally, with Asian countries taking an active interest in Australia. Approximately 26 per cent of Indonesian respondents, 12 per cent of Singaporean and 12 per cent of Chinese executives picked Australia among their top three growth markets, compared with just four per cent of American and two per cent of German respondents.
"Clearly Australia has a pivotal role to play in an increasingly influential region of the world," said A&O Australia partner Geoff Simpson. "This provides Australian businesses an opportunity to win a growing share of the world's most dynamic markets in Asia. Meanwhile, Asian countries are also eyeing up opportunities for investment in Australia, which will integrate Australia further into the regional economy."
The issues that concern executives in Australia with regards to the global economy in the coming year include an Asian economic slowdown (26%), political instability (21%) and a Eurozone sovereign debt default (19%).