The 21st century has brought about even greater levels of cooperation among foreign countries and businesses looking to get into untapped and developing markets. As expansion in China continues to slow, other markets are sought across southeast asia from western companies looking to develop a stronghold in the region. Having been a center for western business in the region for more then half a century, Singapore continues to align itself as the friendliest city and country in the region for these businesses.
Recently, a Memorandum of Understanding regarding Intellectual Property Rights was signed between Singapore and the UK. Designed to boost trade and the wealth of both countries, this landmark agreement provides a great deal of insight into where the UK is hedging its bets regarding growing markets, as well as Singapore’s willingness to work with other foreign countries to bring in business. Lets take a look at the trade deal and see what it means for both countries involved.
A Legacy Of Trade
The UK is currently the 5th largest economy by GDP, only beaten by the entirety of the European Union, the United States, China, Japan, and Germany. With a history of international trade dating back for hundreds of years and a legacy of being the strongest naval power in the world, the UK is still heavily invested in trade with countries from all around the world. In particular, the UK has a long and storied history with the city and nation-state of Singapore, located in south east Asia. While Singapore and the UK would eventually split, they have still maintained a strong business relationship that can be easily seen in the most recent agreement.
Singapore on the other hand has transformed itself over the last 60 years into a business and economic powerhouse in the region. Incredibly friendly to business, Singapore consists of a massive city on several islands and acts as the center of many international businesses looking to work within south east Asia. With some of the best Internet infrastructure in the world, a great deal of talent, and high standards for education, it I no wonder that Singapore continues to be a hug for western companies looking to do business in the area.
A Historic Deal
Of increasing importance is the adherence to intellectual property in foreign countries. What the UK and the US have suffered from in the past is a lack of intellectual property rights in southeastern Asian countries, leading to decreased business revenue. What this latest memorandum of understanding improves upon is what Singapore is doing in regards to upholding intellectual property law. As a result, it can continue to adequately service the 1000+ UK businesses based in Singapore and continue to add to the amount of overall UK trade going through the country. While at 15% at the moment, analysts expect this number to grow 5% this year, spurred on by the deal that was reached between the two countries.