The global economic recovery will begin in Asia, according to Bacardi’s regional director Asia Pacific.
Aude Rocourt was speaking to Drinks International at the recent Tax Free world Association exhibition in Singapore.
“The US and European economies will take longer to recovery,” she said. “I am extremely confident about the growth in Asia. This is the right place to be.”
She said that while competitors are winding down their activities and cutting jobs, Bacardi is not planning to do any of that. She said that they were focusing on consumers, supporting retailers and looking to “add value” wherever possible.
Rocourt, who has worked for Bacardi for 20 years, sees China and then India as the countries that will begin the world’s economic recovery. Indicative of that was the development of airports in the region. Rocourt said that she had been to 12 airport and airport terminal openings in the last year, compared to two in Europe – Heathrow Terminal Five and Charles de Gaulle Terminals E & F.
Unlike the disastrous opening of T5, Rocourt said the Asian projects had opened on time and were operating from day one “as smooth as silk”.
Rocourt emphasised the importance of modern well run airports with quality shopping as shop windows for the city and for the nation. She cited Hyderabad and Bangalore in India as airports with a hinterland of approximately 20 million people. The rising middle classes in countries such as China and India, were the consumers of tomorrow, she concluded.