Southeast Asia Rising in Popularity (Reuters)

Survey shows U.S. companies look to move business from China to Southeast Asia.

Southeast Asia is a growing destination for U.S. companies shifting business out of China, according to a survey by the American Chamber of Commerce in Singapore, Reuters reports. The survey of 356 senior executives at companies in the region shows 21% now plan to move some operations to Southeast Asia in the next two years to reduce their reliance on China, up from 15% in last year’s survey.

The top destinations for companies were Malaysia and the Philippines, with 27% of executives citing each country. The Philippines has become much more popular since last year’s survey, when it was the top choice of only15% of respondents. Vietnam, last year’s top choice, moved down to 24% this year.

Rising labor costs in China may be the reason companies are considering moving their operations elsewhere. According to the survey, 92% of respondents said they felt positively about investing opportunities in the ASEAN region, which includes Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Vietnam, the Philippines, Myanmar, Cambodia, Laos and Brunei.

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