Malaysia, India and South Korea are the most ideal markets as new export destinations for six Pacific nations namely, Papua New Guinea (PNG), Timor Leste, Solomon Islands, Fiji, Vanuatu and Samoa.
The three countries are the most potential ahead of Thailand and the Philippines, the ANZ Bank said in its latest Pacific Quarterly report.
“Those three countries came up on the top. They aren’t thought of as major trading partners of the Pacific but maybe they deserve a second look,” the bank’s chief economist for Asia-Pacific, Paul Gruenwald, said.
The study compared key demand areas in Asian countries with what the Pacific has to offer. It also took into account other important factors such as transport costs and (cost of) doing business.
As for China, he said: “China topped the list for only one of the countries that we looked at, and that is PNG. It’s because China’s demand is for hard commodities, but on a lot of the soft commodities, China tries to be self-sufficient.
“So, it is not going to be a big demander of those types of goods. So, that might not necessarily be a good market for some of the Pacific economies that export the softer commodities in the basket,” he added