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ESG, technology sector top priority for investments in Asia

reporters@khaleejtimes.com Filed on September 5, 2021
Neelam Verma, vice-president and head of investments, The Continental Group.

More than 90 percent agreed that India and China are the growing markets in Asia for the next three years.


Companies with a strong focus on Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) and technology as a sector are the key choices of investment in the Asia market amidst the pandemic, revealed The Continental Group in a recently concluded webinar titled ‘Investment Opportunities and Challenges in Asian Markets – Discovering the potential in emerging markets'.

Neelam Verma, vice-president and head of investments, The Continental Group, said: “The Asia Pacific investment market is known as the engine of growth within the world economy. China has risen to new heights with its global predominance over the last two decades while India is predicted to become the third largest economy by 2030. With the dividend culture being firmly ingrained within many Asian countries, perception of Asia is gradually shifting into an income gaining investor market as opposed to a market focused only on long-term growth. India has raised more than $8 billion in IPOs this year. If the IPOs in India continue at the same pace, we will end up with more than $12 billion worth of IPOs.”

In a poll conducted by Continental, 78 percent of respondents chose ESG as the trending choice whereas 66 percent preferred the technology sector, 24 percent preferred pharma while the remaining 10 percent chose financial services. More than 93 percent of the audience agreed that India and China will continue to offer economic growth for the next two to three years.

The webinar hosted by Anselm Mendes the Executive Director, Sales and Technology, at the Continental Group, witnessed participation of esteemed panellists namely Neelam Verma, Vice President and Head of Investments, The Continental Group; Dionne Cheung, Associate Investment Director – Asia ex Japan Equities, Schroders and Lakshmi Iyer, Chief Investment Officer (Debt) & Head Products from Kotak Mahindra Asset Management.

Given the recent volatility in the Asian investment markets, the webinar mainly covered the current Asian financial markets scenarios, role of the Central banks, the future of artificial intelligence & technology and outlook of the market in India and China.

Dionne Cheung, Associate Investment Director – Asia ex Japan Equities, Schroders, said: “In the year 2020, China was the best performing market in Asia since it was successful in containing the pandemic. Primarily, the travel and tourism sector, businesses such as airlines, hotels or Macau gaming industry have been negatively impacted in China. China has further infused liquidity in order to support the economy and is also looking at regulations such as wealth redistribution for the greater common good.”

Lakshmi Iyer, Chief Investment Officer (Debt) & Head Products from Kotak Mahindra Asset Management, said: “Global debt is at a record high and investment yields are under stress. Since liquidity is going into financial assets in the Asian markets, there could be a potential source of an inflation threat. With the global markets soaring, gold has still lived up to its reputation as a safe haven metal. The pandemic and IPO frenzy has certainly accentuated the pace of the participation of millennials into the Asian capital markets.”

There is no doubt that the pandemic has further pushed digitisation in less tech-savvy markets of Asia leading to an exponential growth of e-commerce as well. — business@khaleejtimes.com

Staff Reporter





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