A digital decade for Southeast Asia

Funding fuels opportunity

Across the digital economy, investment is on track towards a record high in 2021. The value of deals in the region was $11.5 billion in the first half of 2021, compared with $11.6 billion in the whole of 2020. Most funding (about 60%) is going to e-commerce and digital financial services, but the growth of health technology has caught investors’ attention: funding for the sector rose to a record high of $1.1 billion in the first six months of the year, more than the 2020 total of $800 million. And there is a pool of $14.2 billion of capital available for founders looking for backing to take their ideas forward.

Looking ahead: a digital decade for everyone

A $1 trillion digital economy in 2030 would mean more widely-accessible online services, new jobs and stronger businesses. It would also see Southeast Asia shaping advances in technology for the wider Asia-Pacific region and beyond, as a bellwether of global digital trends. But to make sure the digital decade benefits as many people as possible, we have to focus on the right enablers. The priorities for the years ahead include getting regulatory frameworks right, putting data infrastructure in place, and ensuring the digital economy develops in a way that’s equitable — for example, by protecting the interests of gig workers and safeguarding online privacy.

Google’s commitment is to help build a digital economy that can benefit everyone in Southeast Asia by 2030. We want to play our part in creating responsible growth and providing economic opportunities for current and future generations. We’ll continue to build the future of the internet in and for this region, provide inclusive, safe access for the communities we serve, and be a partner to Southeast Asia’s businesses and governments on the way to a bigger, better digital economy.

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