ASEAN KEY DESTINATIONS
Singapore agency eyes partnership with DARE
A SINGAPOREAN government agency is hoping to work with Darussalam Enterprise (DARE) to build partnerships between Bruneian companies and those from the city state.
Ivan Tan, group director for Southeast Asia group of International Enterprise (IE), said the agency, which primarily helps promote Singaporean companies to the international markets, wants to build on potential opportunities for collaboration in sectors outside of oil and gas.
“We’ve mentioned about halal manufacturing and ecotourism but there could be more. We hope to identify good partnerships between Brunei and Singapore companies and that will serve as a good signal to Singaporean companies that there is more than just oil and gas in Brunei,” he said in an interview following a dialogue hosted by DARE.
Tan said companies that want to use the agency’s international network must go through a process which includes measuring one’s risk appetite and amount of resources.
Other aspects that are taken into account are the business model of the particular company and its business direction.
“It (finding partners) involves a specific process so it’s quite hard to generalise. But one of the major factors is reputation and track record of the partner company along with its financial strength,” he said.
He said the business should also know about the network of its prospective partner company to help them navigate in a foreign market.
Tan said good partnerships are central for businesses to work but the partnership structures differs from company to company.
“Our role as a government agency is to help facilitate that. We try to understand their (companies) and then provide market advice to them but at the end of the day it is up to them to decide what they want to do,” he said.
IE has over 30 centres in different parts of the world to collect and make sense of information on the ground. Information on a particular country would then be relayed to the companies that want to expand into that market.
Last night’s DARE dialogue was focused on regional opportunities for business expansion, taking into account initiatives such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership, ASEAN Economic Community and the One Belt One Road initiative.
In his presentation, Tan highlighted the need for businesses to understand the implications of global trade developments and the changing consumer landscape in various countries.
Based on projections by institutions such as the the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank, Tan said Asia’s urban population is set to grow to 2.6 billion by 2030.
He said Myanmar, Indonesia and Vietnam also have a growing middle class which businesses can tap into.
In his introductory speech, DARE CEO Loo Yau Soon said the dialogue aimed to help Bruneian businesses seeking to grow beyond the local market.
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