STATE OF ENTREPRENEURSHIP IN THE APAC REGION
The Asia-pacific (APAC) region covers countries from the Middle-east, India, China, Japan, Far-east Russia, Australia, New Zealand, and the many islands in between. This region holds huge prospects for entrepreneurship owing to its large populace, differing levels of development, gaps in the market, and other such factors.
‘Start-up’ is becoming one of the most used expressions globally; entrepreneurship is closely associated with the word. Establishing and running a start-up is the most prominent aspect of entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurs are the people who tackle a need in the market. They are innovative, dynamic, knowledgeable, and are risk-takers who are more than just businessmen. This culture of entrepreneurship is being accommodated into people’s minds and lifestyles due to various aspects like increased awareness and growing potential; more so in the APAC region.
In 2018, the APAC region was responsible for 45% of global investment inflows, and in 2019, it became the largest destination and source for Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) globally. The future prospects too hold steady progress for the region.
Entrepreneurship has many effects on a country and its people. It elevates the standard of living, educational, and employment levels, while also greatly influencing a nation’s economy. Taking away none of its greatness, studies suggest that entrepreneurs in the APAC region have other reasons to choose entrepreneurship apart from obvious reasons like motivation, opportunity, or work preference.
In countries like New Zealand, the Philippines, and Japan, Entrepreneurship is more of a necessity than a choice. It is intriguing to note that entrepreneurship is an obligation for a few masses in the region. What a tough obligation to have! Considering the fact that being an entrepreneur is no cakewalk; right from its inception, throughout its journey of growth, an entrepreneur is subjected to the stress and responsibility of making critical decisions and constantly evolving with the market.
However, other countries like China, Hong Kong, Singapore, and India have turned opportunities into successful entrepreneurship activities. Singapore has always remained atop the recipients of global investments in the APAC region. Beijing, the capital city of China is home to the most number of unicorns – private companies with a valuation of over $1 billion in the APAC region. The APAC country in which the time required to start a business is the least is New Zealand. With many such distinctions, the APAC region has acquired the reputation of hosting a successful entrepreneurship environment.
Despite such achievements, start-ups in the APAC region have not been immune to the impact of covid-19 and the economic crisis that followed. Reports reveal that 92% of businesses in the region have been negatively impacted by covid-19. Nevertheless, there is a silver lining. It is observed that young entrepreneurs were able to adapt quickly and come up with innovative and transforming models for their businesses. Also, many youth-led solutions have been incorporated as the norm to navigate the challenges brought forth by the pandemic. Consequently, experts urge governments and foundations to support young entrepreneurs in leading the way out of these crises into a better tomorrow.
The world post-covid will offer different prospects for entrepreneurship. Digitization was the solution and the key this time around and it has permeated businesses, economies, personal and professional lives. It has helped raise up new entrepreneurs during this crisis while also aiding the existing ones in thriving during this pandemic.
Going forward, it is indispensable to embrace the idea of sustainable development and its aspects in every business. Anyways, as a vibrant center for entrepreneurship and young potential, the APAC region will sure re-emerge with a resilient recovery.