Southeast Asia’s regional economies are relatively open and market-driven, and ASEAN countries have good relations with the United States.
U.S. exports of agricultural products to ASEAN countries totaled $10.7 billion in 2013. Leading categories include: soybeans ($1.7 billion), dairy products ($1.3 billion), wheat ($1.1 billion), cotton ($923 million), and soybean meal ($909 million). Southeast Asia represents a market with a combined estimated GDP of more than $6 trillion in 2015. A core competency of the major markets in this region is its ability to adopt new technologies and management systems rapidly. Biotechnology acceptance is not a major issue.
Southeast Asia’s animal protein consumption is projected to achieve a compounded annual growth rate of 20 percent in the next five years. Largely dependent on imported raw feed ingredients, this region needs to increase its purchase of soybean and soybean meal exponentially to meet demand.