Trade Navigator

Benefit from the most comprehensive research into global trade and business confidence.

Trade Navigator

HSBC Navigator is the most comprehensive research into global trade and business confidence. We know, from asking over 6,000 businesses globally, what businesses like yours think now, what is next and how we can help you navigate the global business environment.

We have compiled insight into one global overview and reports from 23 markets across the world. Each one gives you some tips for how businesses like yours can continue to grow and predicts where you can unlock opportunities into the future. Join the conversation using #HSBCNavigator


Featured Content

Firms around the world are navigating uncertainty with optimism

Watch Noel Quinn talk about some of the Navigator findings and how HSBC can help you unlock future opportunities for your business.

We have insight from 23 markets around the world – here are some of the global findings from over 6,000 businesses like yours. Can you relate? Join in the conversation at #HSBCNavigator. For knowledge about what is happening in your market or that of your competitors, suppliers or buyers – have a look at the range of reports we have here.

Protectionism on the rise – impacts business operational costs and availability of skills

  • 61 per cent of firms globally think governments are becoming protective of their domestic economies.
  • This sentiment is strongest among companies in MENA (70 per cent), and Asia-Pacific (68 per cent).
  • In the USA, 61 per cent have seen an increase in protectionism, while in Europe, less than half are seeing a rise in protectionist tendencies.
  • As a result, two in five firms (40 per cent) globally report an increase in the costs of doing international business. A shortage in the availability of skills and labour (28 per cent), and the need to establish joint ventures or local subsidiaries (28 per cent) are the next largest impacts identified by companies.

Firms have bullish outlook for short-term growth and cross-border business

  • 77 per cent businesses are optimistic about their international business prospects, and expect the volume of trade to increase over the next 12 months.
  • Companies in Asia-Pacific have the most positive outlook (82 per cent).
  • Reasons behind this confidence include an increase in demand for their products from consumers and businesses (33 per cent), favourable economic conditions (31 per cent) and the greater use of technology (22 per cent).
  • 61 per cent of companies globally are also positive about the specific growth outlook for their trade in services. Emerging economies are significantly more optimistic (69 per cent) than developed markets (53 per cent).

Increased regional trade emerges as key business strategy to overcome uncertainty over global trade policy

  • 74 per cent of cross-border trade in Europe and Asia-Pacific is being conducted in the region.
  • This trend is set to continue with regional ties being prioritised in firms’ expansion plans for the next three to five years.
  • Regional initiatives such as China’s BRI (40 per cent) and ASEAN’s 2025 strategy (37 per cent) were cited most frequently as having a positive impact on international business.
  • 28 per cent of firms say they are looking at establishing joint ventures or local subsidiaries to overcome protectionism.

HSBC Navigator is the most comprehensive report of global trade and business confidence. It combines an economic forecast of medium to long-term bilateral trade for exports/imports of goods and services across 26 markets (by Oxford Economics), and a global survey of over 6,000 businesses by Kantar TNS over Dec 2016 – January 2017.

Navigator jargon buster

When we talk about businesses operating internationally, the words ‘acronym soup’ can spring to mind. We wanted to make some of these acronyms and terms easier to understand and have created this jargon buster of some of the key terms you might find.

(ASEAN) Association of Southeast Asian Nations is a political, economic and security union consisting of 10 member countries - Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam.

(BRI) Belt and Road Initiative refers to the Silk Road Economic Belt and 21st Century Maritime Silk Road. It is a significant development strategy launched by the Chinese government with the intention of promoting economic co-operation among countries along the proposed Belt and Road routes.

(CPTPP) Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership is a free trade agreement involving 11 countries across the Pacific Rim region, including New Zealand, Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, Singapore, and Vietnam.

(EU) European Union is a political and economic union made up of 28 European state members.

Export is a good or service sold to a buyer in another country.

Free trade area is where a group of countries come together and reduce or generally abolish tariff and non-tariff trade barriers between them, but with no common trade policy with non-members. The North American Free Trade Area (NAFTA) and the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) are examples of free trade areas.

(GDP) Gross Domestic Product is a monetary measure of the market value of all final goods and services produced in a period (quarterly or yearly) of time. Nominal GDP estimates are commonly used to determine the economic performance of a whole country or region, and to make international comparisons.

(ICC) International Chambers of Commerce is billed as the world’s largest business organisation with the purpose of promoting international trade, responsible business conduct and a global approach to regulation. It aims to help business of all sizes and in all countries to operate both internationally and responsibly.

Import is a good or service purchased from a seller in another country.

International trade is the exchange of capital, goods and services across international borders or territories.

(NAFTA) The North American Free Trade Agreement is signed by Canada, Mexico, and the United States, creating one of the largest free trade zones.

Open account is a transaction in international trade where the goods are shipped and delivered before payment is due, which is typically in 30, 60 or 90 days.

Services trade include trade of, for example, business and professional services (accounting, advertising, legal etc), communications (audio-visual, postal, courier, telecommunications), construction, distribution and transport, tourism and financial services, to name a few.

Subsidy is a form of financial aid or support extended to an economic sector (or institution, business, or individual) generally with the aim of promoting economic and social policy. Commonly extended from government, the term subsidy can relate to any type of support, including: direct (cash grants, interest-free loans) and indirect (tax breaks, insurance, low-interest loans, accelerated depreciation, rent rebates).

Supply chain finance is a finance solution that focus on increasing the efficiency of transactions and payment terms to reduce the cost of funding – both for a company and their suppliers.

Tariff is a tax imposed on a product when it is imported into a country. Some countries also apply tariffs to exports.

Trade risk distribution is the option to invite other investors to participate in a transaction to distribute the risk.

Trade deficit an economic measure of international trade in which a country's imports exceeds its exports.

Trade finance provides finance for trade, both domestically and internationally.

Trade policy is the regulations and agreements that control imports and exports.

(WTO) World Trade Organization operates a global system of trade rules and acts as a forum for negotiating trade agreements. The WTO also settles trade disputes between its members and supports the needs of developing countries.

You are leaving the HSBC Commercial Banking website.

Please be aware that the external site policies will differ from our website terms and conditions and privacy policy. The next site will open in a new browser window or tab.

You are leaving the HSBC CMB website.

Please be aware that the external site policies will differ from our website terms and conditions and privacy policy. The next site will open in a new browser window or tab.