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Boom in Southeast Asia e-commerce predicted
December 12, 2017, 10:21 am

While China has more than 750 million internet users, the number of online users in Southeast Asia is expected to hit 450 million by 2020 [Xinhua]

Internet research and development has seen a boon in the Southeast Asia region as data indicates that the internet-based economy there is expected to hit at least $200 billion in the next 7 years.

In 2017 alone, the internet economy in Southeast Asia is expected to top $50 billion, making it one of the fastest-growing and lucrative industries in the world.

According to a report co-authored by Google and Temasek, a Singapore-based investment company, the number of internet users will witness unprecedented growth from the current 330 million to 480 million in the next two years.

The report says that 90 per cent of all internet users in the Southeast Asia region are using smartphones.

“Southeast Asia’s mobile internet users are among the most engaged globally, spending on average 140 minutes per month on these platforms versus 80 minutes per month for the leading marketplace in the US,” the report says.

Traditionally, China and India have been the tech giants in that part of the world, dominating both in internet usage, number of users, and industrial web-related telecommunication output.

But countries like Vietnam, Indonesia, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines, Timor-Leste, Myanmar, Cambodia, Laos and Brunei have been fast catching up.

In these countries, internet consumers are using the web and their smartphones to buy products online, book tickets and hotel rooms, and even hail cabs.

The report cites $12 billion invested in e-commerce in these countries but does recommend “that $40-50B worth of investments would be required over 10 years to help grow Southeast Asia to a $200B internet economy by 2025”.

The BRICS Post with inputs from Agencies

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