• Over the previous year, store-based retail sales in key ASEAN consumer markets have plummeted and remained sluggish.
  • Since the outbreak of the pandemic, the usage of mobile e-commerce has increased dramatically.
  • In just four years, the value of ASEAN e-commerce has increased nearly sixfold.

Chart 1: Over the previous year, physical retail sales in key ASEAN developing markets have plummeted and remained sluggish. Sales in Singapore and Indonesia fell the most, by approximately 18%, owing to nearly two months of the island country and a nationwide quarantine in Indonesia to halt the outbreak’s spread. In contrast, owing to its effective management of the epidemic, Vietnam has outperformed the rest of the region in terms of physical retail sales, falling just 0.1 percent in 2020.

Chart 2 : 

Most customers in the region haven’t owned a desktop pc due to lack of internet access. Instead, as smartphones have grown less expensive and accessible, they have become the primary way of staying connected and shopping online. Indonesia appeared as the world’s largest most active adopter of mobile commerce with 79% of Indonesian online consumers acquiring goods online through the use of a smartphone, followed by Thailand with 74%, the Philippines’s 64% and Singapore came in sixth place in terms of mobile commerce usage, having 64% of online shoppers buying online using a mobile phone.

Chart 3 : 

Within only four years, the value of the ASEAN e-commerce market has increased nearly sixfold, from US$9.5 billion in 2016 to US$54.2 billion in 2020. As a result of the increase of digital customers, the industry is projected to expand at a 22% annualized pace and reach US$146 billion by 2025. As the graph shows, consumer spending as a percentage of overall retail sales reaches 9% in 2020, up from 4% in 2018. The ASEAN e-commerce industry continues to develop in terms of online adoption, which is predicted to remain as businesses adjust to the new normal.