UOB has partnered with the Singapore Business Federation to help more Singapore companies seize cross-border business opportunities in ASEAN. 
 
This comes after the two sides signed a Strategic Partnership Agreement, with SBF to be the chosen financial partner of the [email protected] Strategic Partnerships initiative.
 
In a Feb 19 release, UOB said the collaboration “combines the strengths of UOB and SBF in connecting Singapore businesses, including more than 27,000 SBF members, to opportunities opening up across ASEAN, especially in Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam.”
 
It added that the region presents a compelling proposition for businesses looking to grow, with the bloc projected to be the world’s fourth-largest economy by 2050. Trade agreements, such as the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, are also expected to boost the region’s growth.


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As such, UOB said through its FDI (Foreign Direct Investment) Centres located across the region and SBF’s Singapore Enterprise Centres, companies will benefit from the on-ground assistance provided by both organisations. 
 
UOB will also provide financial support and help businesses in their digitalisation journey, accelerating their adoption of technology by providing its comprehensive suite of digital solutions.
 
In addition, both organisations will share information and resources with Singapore companies. 
 
This will be through avenues such as webinars that are “complimentary” for SBF members to help them learn more about ASEAN’s diverse operating environments and to identify business opportunities.
 
UOB said its FDI Advisory Unit helps companies with their market entry by providing deep in-market insights and access to the Bank’s partner ecosystem, comprising regional government agencies, trade and business associations. 
 
It also highlighted that such insights and access are essential to companies navigating their overseas expansion, a sentiment that was reiterated in a recent study by UOB. According to the UOB SME Outlook 2021 Study, the lack of local market knowledge and difficulty in finding the right partners were the top two barriers Singapore companies faced when venturing overseas.