Some key indicators from the survey revealed signs of a slight deterioration
Coface conducts an annual survey to ex-amine corporate pay-ment trends and expe-riences in the Asia-Pacific region. In 2014, the survey was conducted in 8 econ-omies – Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Singapore and Taiwan, as well as, for the first time, Thailand. The study revealed some key indicators that showed signs of a slight deterio-ration. Overdues have become a more common occurrence for more re-spondents and a slightly higher per-centage reported that the average length of overdue periods was longer than 90 days. In addition, more re-spondents indicated that overdue amounts have increased over the last year. On the other hand, with improve-ments in issues concerning ultra-long overdues, we can see that the more prudent attitude taken towards credit management seems to have shown its usefulness. To prove the validity of this opinion, we investigated insolven-cy trends in these economies and concluded that risks are improving in Japan, Singapore, and Taiwan. For this report, several risk underwriters also shared their on-the-ground views on sector development in their respective economies. From Occupy Central in 4Q2014, to the segregated protests against “par-allel traders” in 1Q2015, Hong Kong grabbed the world’s attention. While economic data has not yet fully re-flected the impact from these events, Coface expects stronger headwinds in 2015, despite the expectations of a moderate pickup in growth resulting from the sustained recovery in the west. Already hit by the economic slowdown in China, Hong Kong’s economy is showing flu-like symp-toms – illustrated by the feverish property sector and the fatigue expe-rienced by the retail sector.