Asia's 5 best countries for foreign investors

Asia's 5 best countries for foreign investors

Malaysia is on the #44 Forbes 2016 list of Best Countries for Business. In first quarter this year, this country economic growth forecast at 4.6%. For more, Malaysia is often cited as one of the best places in Asia for foreign direct investment.

Forbes Contributor Ralph Jennings talked to business consultants, lenders and investors to find best places for foreigners to make investments in Asia. Here are the five biggest in Asia, four of them is in Southeast Asia:

Keterangan Gambar (© Pemilik Gambar)
The Petronas Towers loom large over Kuala Lumpur, the capital of Malaysia. © The Telegraph

1. Malaysia


The country is one of the top recipients of foreign direct investment, reflected by an outsized 64% increase in foreign capital last year compared to 2015.

The government of Prime Minister Najib Razak is considered pro-business. His country offers tax breaks on capital expenditures for R&D, exempts duties on imports used by high-tech firms and offers a 10-year tax break of up to 70% for companies in priority sectors such as tourism, manufacturing and technical training, Healy Consultants PLC says on its website.

Malaysia isn’t Asia’s bargain basement, but prices are fair.

Keterangan Gambar (© Pemilik Gambar)
Singapore’s city sights at night. © Changi

2. Singapore

This modern city-state of 5.8 million people will cost you a bit, but it takes a free-port approach to inbound investment. The Southeast Asian financial hub lacks the corruption of other parts of Asia, meaning rules are enforced for rules’ sake. Foreign investors need not enter joint ventures.

Singapore does not restrict repatriation of earnings, this U.S. government website notes. The judicial system that includes mediation and arbitration for foreign companies “upholds the sanctity of contracts, and decisions are transparent and effectively enforced,” the website says.

Keterangan Gambar (© Pemilik Gambar)
Day life in Ho Chi Minh, the Vietnam Megapolis. © Adecco

3. Vietnam

Low land prices and minimum wages of just a couple dollars per day plus economic growth that looks to foreign factory investment equal keen interest among producers of an ever-widening range of stuff. Among the investors are Ford Motor, Intel and Samsung Electronics. Investors said in a 2010 survey they like Vietnam for the stability of its Communist regime, the consultancy Price Water House Coopers says.

Fast improvements in transport infrastructure and attention to rule of law have also gained the trust of foreign capitalists despite periodic economic glitches such as a sudden drop in currency rates in 2011.

The economy is also one of the fastest growing in Asia.

Keterangan Gambar (© Pemilik Gambar)
Jakarta, Indonesia at night. © Backpacking Asia

4. Indonesia

Political stability of the world’s fourth largest country has also helped attract foreign capital, including a nearly 1% year-on-year increase in the first quarter of 2017. The archipelago of more than 10,000 islands comes with its own minerals as well as officials who the Asian Development Bank said this year "continue to announce policy reforms intended to ease red tape."

Investor tend to pursue mining and energy, plantations and financial services. A lot of tape got cut in 2007 with the "one-stop shop" policy that lets foreigners get business licenses in one place, meaning faster than before. The process can take just months, according to Labor costs are low, as well, and the population is big enough that manufactured goods may be sold locally.

Keterangan Gambar (© Pemilik Gambar)
Bandra-Worli Sea Link in Mumbai, India. © Daily Moss

5. India

Low wages and a young population --half of the 1.25 billion people are between ages 20 and 59-- put India on the board for a lot of would-be investors. The government’s focus since an economic crisis in 1991 to liberalize industries has steadily attracted a range of foreign firms to a nation that’s now growing around 7% per year.

Investors are chasing automotive production, telecoms and bio-manufacturing, taking advantage of government incentives in some cases. The government in 2014 created a pro-investor “Make in India” scheme that opened 25 sectors to foreign capital. Capital inflows grew 46% over the following year and in 2015-16 India recorded is highest ever direct investment inflow, $55.5 billion.


Adriani Zulivan

Menjadi tim hore pers mahasiswa tingkat jurusan, fakultas dan universitas di Universitas Gadjah Mada. Selama 13 tahun jungkir balik pelajari dunia komunikasi sambil bekerja. Benci losyen dan bulu More mata anti badai. Wisatawan tetap pasar tradisional. Bahagia jika mendapat kopi dan kain khas nusantara. Jatuh cinta pada pusaka Indonesia. Bersama Elanto Wijoyono membangun Indonesian Heritage Inventory (IHI) Memasang telinga pada isu sejarah, lingkungan, perkotaan, disabilitas, media digital dan kesejahteraan mahluk lucu bernama hewan. Mengatakan tidak pada rokok dan segala kegiatan terkait industri candu tersebut. Menahan diri untuk tidak makan di PKL yang berdagang di pedestrian, malu kalau "dilihat" teman tuna netra. Kecepatan membeli buku tidak berbanding lurus dengan kecepatan membaca buku. Sedang melakukan proyek beberes dan mengurangi sampah pribadi, terutama plastik. Pandai menulis dan menjahit menjadi cita-cita terbesar yang entah kapan terwujud. Mencintai Yogyakarta, namun (masih) bermukim dan menjadi TKW di Jakarta. Pengguna tetap media sosial, yang sering lupa membalas komentar. Less
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