Combined, ASEAN forms one of the fastest growing economic powerhouses and is one of the world’s top five economies, behind the US, EU, China and Japan.
Talk to us today

Connecting businesses to where the growth is

Source: PwC, The Future of ASEAN: Time to Act

What is ASEAN?

At the centre of the Asian region is ASEAN – the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, formed in 1967. The association is made up of ten nations: Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam, Thailand, Philippines, Indonesia, Brunei, Lao, Myanmar and Cambodia. During ASEAN’s original inception, economic growth, social progress, cultural development and regional peace were cemented as the core principles by the founding nations and still stand strong today.

They have successfully weathered both the Asian financial crisis of 1997 and the global economic crisis of 2008-09, to make it one of the world’s top 5 economies. ASEAN’s countries equate to a total of 642 million people, accounting for over 8% of the world’s population with a GDP of US$2.76tn growing at a rate of 4.7% - this is significantly higher than any other global region and translates to a per capita metric of US$4,308.

Your guide to doing business in ASEAN

Through the years in ASEAN, HSBC has been part of the prosperous economic growth along the way. Today, ASEAN has become one of the world’s top 5 economies and the world’s fastest growing trade bloc, supported by its young dynamic and digital population.

How Australia has become a key partner for ASEAN

  • Australia already has bilateral free trade agreements (FTAs) with four of the largest ASEAN markets – Singapore, Thailand and Malaysia and Indonesia.
  • ASEAN is one of Australia’s top three trading partners, representing around 15 per cent of Australia’s total trade1.
  • Trade between Australia and ASEAN countries amounted to AUD$93.2 billion in 20161.
  • Around 100,000 students from ASEAN countries are studying in Australia1.
  • See a snapshot of Australia’s trade with each ASEAN market by clicking here.

ASEAN is fast becoming critical to global trade as a result of the region’s buoyant economic growth, increasing investment flows and rising affluence of its middle class. As the leading international bank in Australia, HSBC is committed to helping our clients explore the opportunities available to them in ASEAN’s dynamic markets and help them navigate their way to commercial success.

Steve Hughes Managing Director, Head of Commercial Banking, HSBC Australia

Business benefits & opportunities

Now more than ever, companies from all over the world are looking to ASEAN to expand their operations from within the bloc around Asia and globally.

Shifting demographics

ASEAN is home to a dynamic demographic with 35% of the population under 20 years old and 65% to be classed as middle income by 2030, raising spending to hit US$2.3 trillion.

Talk to us today

Fast economic and trade growth

Currently, ASEAN as a trade bloc is one of the top 5 economies in the world, with its GDP set to exceed US$4tn by 20225. Current exports total US$1.3tn, with forecasts predicting exports to rise to US$2.8tn by 2025, making ASEAN the world's fastest-growing trade bloc2&3

Talk to us today

The rise of digital

ASEAN’s digital economy is growing rapidly, with expanding digital networks and growing numbers of mobile phone and Internet users – ASEAN has more people coming online than any other region in the world, with eCommerce forecast to grow to US$88 billion by 2025.

Talk to us today

Cross-border connections

ASEAN has driven a significant reduction in trade barriers across the ASEAN and ASEAN + 6 (Australia, China, India, Japan, New Zealand, The Republic of Korea), easing the cost and complexities of trading across the region – and continued easing of restrictions on labour movement for selected professions and new talent gives businesses access to a young dynamic workforce.

Talk to us today

Interested in expanding your business to ASEAN?

Get in touch

Subscribe for the latest updates

Subscribe now


1 HSBC in ASEAN (ISB Pitchbook)
2 ASEAN. Driving Your Ambition (Accenture ASEAN Consumer Research)
3 ASEAN Statistical Year Book 2018
4 ASEAN Investment Report 2018
5 PwC, The Future of ASEAN: Time to Act
6 HSBC Research, 2018


In Australia, this ASEAN website is distributed by HSBC Bank Australia Limited ABN 48 006 434 162 AFSL 232595 (HSBC), for the general information of its "wholesale" clients (as defined in the Corporations Act 2001).

You are leaving the HSBC CMB website.

Please be aware that the external site policies will differ from our website terms and conditions and privacy policy. The next site will open in a new browser window or tab.

You are leaving the HSBC CMB website.

Please be aware that the external site policies will differ from our website terms and conditions and privacy policy. The next site will open in a new browser window or tab.