What are the major trends you see today and how are you helping clients leverage these trends?
The global economy has been experiencing extraordinary economic challenges, with average GDP growth of advanced industrial countries expected to remain sluggish (at below 2%) for the next two years. The Emerging Market (EM) countries, however, are expected to remain the world’s engine for growth, even though their prospects have also been trimmed by 0.3 - 0.4 percentage points for the same period, reflecting their trade linkages with the advanced industrial countries as well as the impact of policy tightening measures to contain developing and actual inflationary pressures. Growth prospects will likely continue to be weighed down by investors’ pullback from risk, in the face of dramatically changing uncertainties associated with sovereign debt and fiscal excesses in the Eurozone as well as the United States.
Notwithstanding these macroeconomic challenges, there are three overriding trends which introduce new challenges but also represent opportunities for growth. They are: 1) Globalisation, 2) Urbanisation, and 3) Digitisation. Citi, with its long-standing reputation for innovation and focus on globality, partners with its clients in all regions to leverage its local, regional and global client and market knowledge to create solutions to leverage these important trends. Let me expand on each of these important mega trends: