Country Profiles
Vietnam  
  • Coastline of about 3,400 kilometers facing the South China Sea giving access to shipping routes to China and Japan.
  • The Ho Chi Minh City port facilities strategic location for access to both Indian Ocean and South China Sea ranked 29th in the world, with cargo volumes surging more than 4 times from 1999 to 2009.
  • GDP rose by average of 7.3% annually over the last decade.
  • With a literacy rate of over 90%, adding over 1 million people a year to its workforce.
  • China has become a “banker” to Vietnam infrastructure with 4 out of 9 power projects use loans from China.
  • Chinese FDI in Vietnam was up 74% in 2010.
  • The largest producer of black pepper and the second-largest rice exporter and coffee producer in the world. Also the third-largest oil producer in Southeast Asia.
Pakistan  
  • The level of internet users as a % of population in Pakistan is greater than Indonesia, Philippines, Sri Lanka, and India.
  • Different than most developing economies in Asia, Pakistan’s industrial sector has a higher contribution to GDP than the agricultural component.
  • Gallup Pakistan in a June 2009 study estimated that total TV viewership in the country was 86 million with a near split between terrestrial and Sat/Cable technologies.
  • A high growth country, GDP averaged roughly 7% per annum from 2000-2007.
  • Highest urbanization in South Asia. The urban population is likely to equal its rural population by 2030.
  • The 4th largest milk producing country in the world with 45 billion liters per annum.
  • Pakistan is the 4th largest cotton producer in the world with 10.3 million bales in 2011.
Bhutan  
  • Transitioned from an Absolute Monarchy to Constitutional Democracy Monarchy in 1998.
  • Bhutan, the only country that measures its progress by the level of happiness among its citizens. Four years ago prime minister Jigmi Y Thinley launched a gross national happiness (GNH) measure to guide public policy.
  • First country with a constitutional obligation of the population to preserve at least 60% of the nation’s forests.
  • Government forecasts the unemployment rate is forecast to drop to 2.5% be the end of 2012
  • Power generation from Hydropower is large and fast growing part of GDP with electricity sales accounting for over 25% of exports.
Nepal  
  • Nearly 50% of total trade value is with next door neighbor, India.
  • Agriculture remains Nepal's principal economic activity, employing 80% of the population and providing 37% of GDP.
  • The top income and corporate tax rate is 25%.
  • Woolen carpets are Nepal's largest export, earning the country over US$ 135 million per year.
Myanmar (Burma)  
  • Myanmar has massive mineral and gem resources, which are valued at billions of dollars. Reform over the last 18 months have inspired a “gold rush” from foreign investors.
  • Offshore Shwe and Shwephyu Fields are expected to hold between 5.7-10 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.
  • The major agricultural produce is rice which covers about 60% of the country's total cultivated land area. Was once the world's largest exporter of rice in the 1960s.
  • Produces more than 90% of the world’s rubies and fine-quality Jade.
  • The US has eased sanction on Myanmar and several US companies, including PepsiCo, have expressed their desire to do business in the country.
Cambodia  
  • Benefits as a member of ASEAN group from China-Asean free trade agreement (FTA).
  • China is the largest financier of infrastructure projects.
  • About 85% of the cultivated area is devoted to the production of rice, while rubber trees account for a major part of the remainder.
  • The United States remains the largest export partner with nearly 50% of total exports.
  • From 2001-2010, the Cambodian economy expanded by, on average, 8% per year, with the garment sector and the tourism industry driving the growth, and inflation remaining relatively low.
Laos  
  • Construction to begin on high-speed railway connecting capital of Vientiane with Kunming, China and to be completed in 2015 and China to finance 70% of US$4 billion cost.
  • China National Petroleum Corp. is financing a natural gas pipeline from Myanmar to Yunnan province.
  • Korea is the number one investor and China the number 2.
  • The government expects the economy to grow at 8.5% in 2012 with a trade surplus resulting from the export of commodities, including gold, copper, electricity, and garments.
  • Thailand continues to be main trading partner for exports and imports.
  • First stock exchange opened this January with 2 companies listing initially.
  • GDP has expanded by an average of 7.9% a year for the past 5 years.
Sri Lanka  
  • Sri Lanka's 91% literacy rate in local languages and life expectancy of 75 years rank well above those of India, Bangladesh, and Pakistan.
  • Chinese companies are largest investors in country’s major infrastructure projects.
  • The main economic sectors of the country are tourism, tea export, apparel, textile, rice production and other agricultural products.
  • Exports over 90% of the world trade in cinnamon.
  • Best performing international stock market in 2010 with a 96% return.
  • India was the largest source of foreign direct investment to Sri Lanka in 2010 with US$110 million committed.
Bangladesh  
  • Fourth largest rice producer in the world.
  • Southern port city of Chittagong is home to the world’s largest ship breaking yard.
  • Economists at Standard Chartered Bank believe that Bangladesh could join the “7 percent club” of economies that expand at least 7 percent annually for an extended period.
  • Home to the largest mangrove forest in the world and the world’s longest beach at Cox’s Bazaar.
  • The agriculture sector employs nearly 50% of the labor force and generates roughly 20% of GDP.
  • One of the largest democracies in the world, Bangladesh is also the third most populous Muslim nation.
  • Remains the largest exporter of Jute goods (carpet backing, twine, sacks) and the second largest producer of Jute globally.