The Asia-Pacific region could by 2020 account for half the world’s cross-border eCommerce trade.
Already the world’s largest market for online retailing, the rapid growth of online shopping in China alone is driving strong growth in cross-border purchasing – where consumers buy products online from other countries for shipping home.
According to a new report, cross-border online shopper penetration throughout the region varied from a low one-digit percentage in Indonesia to a high of over two-thirds in Australia, as of the beginning of 2015. That means two dollars in every three spent online in Australia was spent overseas.
The conclusions come from a report prepared by German based secondary market research company yStats.com, titled Asia-Pacific Cross-Border B2C eCommerce 2015.
China is the key destination of both cross-border online imports and exports. Close to a third of active online shoppers made purchases across borders in China last year, while China itself ranked at least in the top three online shopping destinations of consumers in countries such as Russia, Brazil, and others.
China’s major eCommerce companies, Alibaba and JD.com, compete on both fields, using their marketplaces to enable foreign merchants to access Chinese online consumers and China-based merchants to access overseas online shoppers.
Another major B2C eCommerce market, Japan, has intense cross-border online trade with China and the US, with cross-border B2C eCommerce exports to these countries from Japan outweighing imports in 2014.
In South Korea, as well, the US and China were the top two destinations for cross-border online shoppers last year, while the most purchased product categories were clothing and health supplements.
The emerging Southeast Asian markets also participate in the cross-border trend, led by Singapore.