If I start with Mauritius, and you know that probably better than I do, we’re starting to see a return to growth. We’re starting to see in our own pipeline, with Dean Lam the Managing Director and his team, we’ve got a good pipeline of companies who have protected their businesses over the last couple of years and are now starting to think about the next stage in their growth, whether that’s here in Mauritius, or it’s in Africa or in other parts of Asia. We are seeing, in the conversations we’re having with companies in Mauritius, an appetite for growth, both domestically and internationally.
If I look more broadly across the region, the fundamentals of the economy remain very strong, which is something South and Southeast Asia are very fortunate to have. Most countries now have, while maybe not the old normal, returned to an almost normal stage, and with much fewer travel and business restrictions. And so I think we’re very positive as a bank that the long-term trajectories for those countries remain strong. As we come out of the pandemic, we’re also seeing more and more, appetite from businesses to invest in resilient growth. They’ve been through their business operations to really assess that, to invest in growth that’s sustainable, and to ensure that the impact they’re having on the world is a more positive one as well. We’re seeing that quite well. We’re also witnessing an increase in the digital space and the connectivity and that ability to be connected.
Of course, from an HSBC perspective, that all plays very nicely to where we think our strengths are, because we’ve got an expertise in sustainable finance, we’ve invested very heavily in digital tools in the region, but more broadly, we also believe that we can use our global trade receivables solutions, but also cash management solutions for the benefit of our customers. We can help with agreed finance, we can make payments easier, and we can make international trade smoother. So all those things are on customers’ minds: making banking faster, easier, and quicker. That’s what we aim to do for our customers. If I look at Mauritius, we’re hearing enriched examples of businesses that want to trade in newer economies, in pharmaceuticals, healthcare, and renewable energy. And all of those are areas that we predict will have a lot of growth opportunities. And we know that if you think about the government, it has made a commitment here that over 65% of local energy generation will be from renewables by 2030, which is not that far away. So to get the 65% shows a real commitment from the government, and we want to play our part to support businesses as they transition to a greener way of operations.