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Our world has never been more connected – by technology, manufacturing, trade, supply chains, tourism and popular culture – and this unprecedented globalization has created enormous benefits for much of the world’s population as a result.

At the same time, there are both public and private forces in Asia Pacific, the US, Europe and elsewhere that are exploiting the clear failings and inequalities of globalization to gain and consolidate power, producing new global divisions in the process.

In The Age of Hypercomplexity, the latest in our Simplifying Business in a Complex World series, we provide a view of how mega trends are impacting doing business in Asia Pacific, arguably the most complex region of a hypercomplex world.

We asked 600 CEOs and other business leaders in China, Hong Kong, Japan, Australia, Singapore, Malaysia and India about the mega trends driving change across the Asia Pacific region, as well as the macro trends affecting their future investment decisions.

Our research reveals several interesting findings about where business leaders’ investment intentions:

  • Across the region, more businesses are planning to invest in South East Asia than they are domestically
  • The majority of executives will prioritize international investment and cross-border M&A overspending in their home markets to yield growth
  • Gaining market share and accessing new markets are the top reasons for pursuing M&A
  • Japan faces several unique macro challenges that are forcing its businesses to look abroad for growth
  • Compliance and regulatory scrutiny will be the top challenge and their greatest source of cost increases
  • China will most likely shape the economic picture in the years ahead, but India will have growing influence, and the US is making a comeback in terms of influence since 2017


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See a summary of our key findings in this video.



Munir Abdul Aziz, a partner in the Corporate, Commercial & Securities Practice Group of Wong & Partners, has been in practice since 1998 in mergers and acquisitions, corporate reorganisations, equity capital markets work, venture capital and private equity, joint ventures and general commercial transactions. He has been named by IFLR1000 as “Leading Lawyer" for Capital Markets since 2013 and for M&A since 2012. He is recommended by PLC Which Lawyer? in Corporate and M&A for three successive years and he has been named as "Leading Lawyer" by Asialaw Profiles for Capital Markets, Corporate/M&A and Private Equity in 2016. He has worked in the London and Melbourne offices of Baker McKenzie International.


Bee Chun heads the Firm's Energy, Mining & Infrastructure Practice Group in Asia Pacific and co-heads the Mergers and Acquisitions practice in Singapore. She has worked in the Firm’s offices in Hong Kong, Shanghai, Taipei and Beijing. Bee Chun practices mainly in the areas of M&A, venture capital and private equity. She was named as one of China's Top 15 Female Lawyers in 2020 by Asian Legal Business (ALB). She is also consistently recognised as a leading lawyer by IFLR1000 in the areas of mergers and acquisitions, private equity and project finance.


Ben McLaughlin is a partner in Baker McKenzie's Sydney office. He has over 25 years' experience in advising leading Australian and international public companies on mergers and acquisitions (M&A) and equity capital markets. Ben invented the Baker McKenzie Healthcare MapApp, an acclaimed mobile application that enables clients to access over 5,000 pages of legal summaries. He has been recognized by Chambers for his work in Australian and international M&A matters, as well as in healthcare and life sciences. Ben has also been recognised as "Lawyer of the Year" for Life Sciences Practice in Sydney and as one of the Best Lawyers in Australia for Corporate / Corporate Governance and M&A Law, Best Lawyers 2022 Edition. Ben is admitted to practice law in Australia and the US, and previously practised as a CPA.


Hideo Norikoshi has over 25 years experience working on a wide range of cross-border M&A transactions, joint ventures and corporate and corporate finance matters in Europe and Asia. He has advised numerous multinational companies, international investment banks and government organizations on landmark transactions, including mergers and acquisitions, public takeovers, corporate restructurings, private equity, international offerings and listing, structured finance and project finance. Hideo spent 10 years in the Japanese civil service from 1980 to 1990 before qualifying as a solicitor. In Japan, he is listed as a leading international lawyer for Corporate/M&A by Chambers Asia-Pacific in 2011-2017.