As part of its recent Explore Asia conference in London, UK Trade & Investment is launching a new report ‘Smart cities of the future in Asia: The opportunities for UK business’, which identifies significant future business opportunities across Asia for UK companies.

The report analyses a number of cities, in terms of ‘smart development’, across ten high growth markets in Asia – Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, and Vietnam.

It also provides detailed analysis of more than 100 current and future projects aimed at improving some of the most dynamic and fast growing cities in Asia, and ranks each of the smart initiatives according to timescale, scope and technological requirements.

Significant business opportunities for UK companies are highlighted across a number of sectors including buildings and the environment, education, energy, health, digital media, and transport – taking into account how British expertise could be deployed to meet each opportunity.

Some of the most significant projects identified in the report, carried out by Frost & Sullivan with input from UK Trade & Investment’s Asian representatives, include:

A major extension of the railway network in Hong Kong – offering opportunities to deliver a rail management system, IT infrastructure within stations and trains, journey planner for passengers and transport interchange infrastructure and sustainable railway design including signalling, main control systems, environmental control system and traction energy system.

Mobile Telemedicine System in Indonesia – with opportunities for companies with technology around patient monitoring, telehealth, telemedicine and smartphone applications.

3G Network deployment in Thailand – providing immediate opportunities for companies that can deliver grid applications, remote monitoring, telehealth, telecommuting, and connected homes.

Renewable energy development project in Vietnam – with the generation of electricity through sources such as small hydro, biomass, solar and wind with opportunities for investors, technology suppliers, EPC contractors to partner in project development.

To help UK businesses to capitalise on these projects and understand the challenges and opportunities they present, UK Trade & Investment hosted a half day ‘Smart Cities in Asia’ seminar on 14th February at MediaCityUK, Salford Quays.

A panel of UK Trade & Investment and industry experts provided in-depth analysis of the projects in Salford, where delegates talked to experts from the research team as well as UK Trade & Investment representatives from the ten markets in the research.

Steve O’Leary, UK Trade & Investment director, Infrastructure and Low Carbon, who spoke at the Salford seminar, said, “It is forecast that by 2020, 40 cities on a global basis will be defined as ‘smart’, with the next wave stemming from Asia. As our report shows this represents concrete opportunities for innovative UK businesses with products and solutions demanded by these cities. We want to ensure that UK companies and British expertise play a significant role in the development of smart cities in Asia, and this report and our events are the first step in this process.”

Frost & Sullivan director of Strategic Partnerships, Iain Jawad, who presented the findings of the report at Explore Asia, said, “Across Asia, the capital cities and other urban centres of developed and emerging markets are facing a broad range of challenges to which smart solutions provide concrete and tangible solutions. From insufficient energy resources to substandard infrastructure the challenges are pressing and fundamental, which means that for UK businesses able to successfully penetrate these markets, the opportunity is both immediate and sustainable.”