Closer ASEAN means more integration expected

I am pro-ASEAN versus the world. Many friends continue to tell me that Singapore is the leading economy in ASEAN. It’s okay, I do not wish to debate on this ‘leading’ word. I hope they continue to be successful and keep growing their population towards the 6.9 million goal by 2030. I think Singapore will do well within ASEAN as long as all other ASEAN nations continue to do well. It may be easier to hire top-notch professionals who are well versed with international business in Singapore but all these are of little use if these businesses are NOT operating within ASEAN.

The manufacturing plant must not be in cheaper cost Eastern European nation because they can also hire top-notch professionals from the UK! Now, what if the manufacturing plants are ONLY located in China? I dare not imagine what would happen to all these current top-notch professionals in the future. I think most would be out of job because sooner or later, China would also have these people! Come on when there are job offers today to Malaysians to work in China, how many get to work within Shanghai anyway? Most are going to be working in secondary cities. These are the cities which finds it hard to attract even the top-notch Chinese (China) professionals!

One more thing has happened for ASEAN. Southeast Asia is now fully OPEN. Yes, the ratification of Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) open skies agreements by Indonesia and Laos in April 2016 allows all airlines to launch unlimited flights from their home to any point in the region subject to airport slot availability. Many reports have said that this will benefit some stronger airlines or even more established airports but do note that no airline would want to fly full to another country and fly back empty. Both sides MUST benefit from all these.

As per experts, there are constraints where airports are concerned. For example, Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport, Manila’s Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila, and Jakarta’s Soekarno-Hatta International Airport have all reached full capacity and congestions are the norm.I agree fully. I have used all three airports and agree with the assessment fully. According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA), a global airline trade body. ASEAN countries can add almost 25 million jobs and US$298 billion to the region’s GDP by 2035 if they invest in aviation infrastructure.

Many Malaysian students travel over the whole of Europe after their studies. I travelled across 6 countries too. Actually, if every visitor to any ASEAN nations travel to just 2 or 3 more countries, it would benefit every member countries. With open skies, this is now possible and made easier too. Let’s keep telling the world that it’s now possible to travel the whole ASEAN easily and conveniently. Yes of course, that include property investments too. Buy a property anywhere within ASEAN and during those months when they need more warmth, they have the whole ASEAN to travel around. Happy travelling.

written on 17 May 2016

Next suggested article: Work in Singapore, stay in Phuket? Cool.

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