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Asian CEOs more upbeat than their Western peers

DESPITE a general decline in confidence levels, Asian chief executive officers (CEOs) are more upbeat than their Western counterparts, says a new PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) survey.

The annual survey, conducted late last year, found that 50 per cent of CEOs were ‘very confident’ about revenue growth over the next 12 months, compared to 52 per cent the previous year – the first time confidence levels for CEOs globally has declined since the 2003 survey.

The difference in outlook was stark when comparing mature with emerging economies, however.

The overall drop in business confidence globally was most pronounced in North America, where 35 per cent of CEOs said they were ‘very confident’ about growth, versus 53 per cent last year.

The confidence of Asian CEOs, on the other hand, increased to 56 per cent in 2007, compared to 49 per cent in 2006.

CEOs in China and India were the most upbeat about the growth prospects in the next 12 months, with about 73 per cent and 90 per cent of the CEOs there respectively saying they were ‘very confident’ about next year’s growth prospects.

‘The world’s economic axis is shifting as Asia consolidates its position and we have good grounds for feeling optimistic about the immediate future,’ said PwC Singapore’s executive chairman Gautam Banerjee.


Source: The Straits Times 5 Feb 08


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