"S'pore is world's 2nd most attractive market to do M&A"03.08.2012
Source: Channel News Asia
Singapore is the world's second most attractive market to do mergers and acquisitions (M&A).
This according to the 2012 M&A Maturity Index published by the M&A Research Centre at Cass Business School and Ernst & Young.
The United States has retained the top spot, while the United Kingdom and Hong Kong took third and fourth place respectively.
The index ranks 148 countries on their ability to attract both domestic and cross border M&A deals.
It was based on an analysis of each country's regulatory, political, economic and financial environments, technological capability, socio-economic characteristics, as well as infrastructure and assets.
The rankings also reflect Asia as an increasingly "mature" region to conduct global transactions.
Out of the top 10 M&A locations globally, Asian countries now make up more than half, with South Korea (5th), China (9th) and Japan (10th) joining Singapore and Hong Kong in the top rung.
Alexis Karklins-Marchay, Emerging Markets Centre Leader at Ernst & Young said: "The lofty rankings of Singapore and Hong Kong are driven mainly by their highly developed infrastructure, the availability of significant assets for purchase and the business-friendly regulatory environment."
He added: "This differs to most of the other top 10 countries, which mainly owe their performance to strong levels of technological maturity, including high-tech exports and innovation in terms of patents filed, which demonstrates a highly skilled business community that can attract investment interest."
Ernst & Young notes however, that high rankings do not necessarily connote high M&A volumes.
Anna Faelten, deputy director of Cass's M&A Research Centre said: "High values or volumes of M&A...are not yet present for many emerging nations, but top rankings do suggest strong conditions for M&A to grow and thrive."
The Index reflected that the strongest factors driving M&A volume were a country's technological developments and socio-economic characteristics, ahead of economic and financial characteristics.
Other top performers include Malaysia, as well as several countries in the Gulf States.
Malaysia leapt seven places to 18th in five years, driven by significant improvements to its regulatory and political environments.
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