Sanela Kevric is head of sales Benelux at Fidelity International. Photo: Olivier Dessy

Sanela Kevric is head of sales Benelux at Fidelity International. Photo: Olivier Dessy

Tokenisation, the democratisation of private assets, sustainable finance and more--there’s plenty on the financial sector’s agenda for 2024. Delano asked Luxembourg investment industry professionals about the top issue on their radar for the coming year.

As part of this series, we asked , head of sales Benelux at Fidelity International, about key issues in the industry for 2024. Kevric told Delano:

“Asia is facing near-term challenges--both homegrown and external ones--that might be overshadowing the region’s longer-term opportunities.”

In China, all it takes is confidence

“China’s property sector continues to struggle as developers grapple with mounting debt and unsold inventory after years of overexpansion. We think a recovery without stabilisation in the property sector is challenging--at least in the short term. The knock-on effects of the slump are such that consumers won’t feel confident enough to spend when much of their wealth is locked in a declining housing market. The property outlook must stabilise before China can pivot further away from investment-led growth to focus more on consumption.”

Bright spots

“Despite this challenging backdrop, we still see plenty of companies that are thriving. Weak headline retail sales data hides the broader success of services, for example, which have expanded by 19 per cent in the first eight months of this year from the same period of 2022, to the benefit of travel, hospitality and entertainment companies among others.”

“Frugality may be on the rise among the middle class, who are concerned about job security and income prospects; they are spending less on big-ticket items--but they are spending relatively more on going out. The potential for consumption to pick up further is clearly there, given the huge amount of bank deposits Chinese consumers continue to accumulate even after the removal of covid-era restrictions. All it takes is a bit more confidence (and stronger stimulus than the sprinkles we have witnessed thus far).”