Investors wanting to gain exposure to Asia can look to multinational companies that are setting up or have set up a presence in the area, said Robert Fuest, the chief operating officer and head of investment research at Landor & Fuest Capital Managers, adding that some of those include DuPont (DD), Dow Chemical (DOW) and Veolia Environment (VE).
"These companies can offer investors a way to reap some of the rewards while at the same time having diversification from a geographical and sector perspective," he said.
Among the mutual funds that focus on the Philippines are balanced funds such as the ALFM Growth Fund and stock funds such as the Philam Strategic Growth Fund. For Indonesia, there's the Market Vectors Indonesia Index ETF (IDX).
Opportunities in Africa aren't quite as transparent, and there are more risks involved with that region.
Most African nations that have stock exchanges have ones that are not large or liquid enough -- or easy enough to trade in for the majority of investors, said Rahemtulla.
But there is "tremendous opportunity" in the natural resource sector, local tourism and construction, he said.
"Ghana's rapidly expanding economy is fueled by increasing revenue from high commodity prices for cocoa, gold and . . . oil," said Matt Spivack, a practice leader for Middle East and Africa at Frontier Strategy Group.
And "with oil production expected to increase every year through at least 2015 at the Jubilee oil field, the nation's government will have the revenue to continue infrastructure upgrades that raise Ghanaians' standard of living and attract foreign investment," he said.
Earlier in May, a senior energy official told Reuters that the government plans to raise its oil revenues to $650 million this year, from $350 million in 2011.
Still, "it has yet to be seen if oil-related revenue is spent wisely," said Paul Herber, portfolio co-manager of the Forward Frontier Strategy Investor Fund (FRONX). Another concern is that Ghana's population is small, so it's tough for it's economy to have a broad impact on the region.
Analysts also see potential and risks in Uganda.
Development of Uganda's oil infrastructure is expected to attract more than $10 billion in the next two years -- "a scenario that promises to accelerate Uganda's overall growth prospects as well as its fiscal position," said Anna Rosenberg, the senior analyst of Africa for Frontier Strategy Group.
At the same time, the country's main driver of foreign direct investment is increased trade coming from regional integration within the East African community, she said. "The knock-on effect of increased trade is infrastructure projects in road, rail and port development that will benefit the region and investors in the long term."
That development in transportation and infrastructure will help offset disadvantages involved with being a landlocked country, said Robert Scharar, the president of wealth management corporation FCA, though being landlocked also means that it shares borders with five other African countries.
Other nations in Africa represent good opportunities, and another aspect to look at would be political stability.
In the analysis of growth potential, political leadership is a factor that has been overlooked, said Scharar.
"Both Senegal and Malawi have experienced recent 'peaceful' changes in government to leaders who are truly part of the new generation of leadership and thus may experience additional growth," he said.
In terms of investing, there's the Nile Pan Africa Fund (NAFAX), a "'pure play' fund that exclusively focuses on investing on the Africa continent," said Larry Seruma, the portfolio manager for the fund.
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[BRIEFING.COM] The S&P 500 settled lower by 0.8% after early strength turned into afternoon weakness.
Today's headline event came in the form of Ben Bernanke's testimony before the Joint Economic Committee. During his remarks, Chairman Bernanke said premature tightening of monetary policy could stall the pace of recovery. This followed weeks of conflicting remarks from FOMC members, which sparked speculation regarding possible changes to the Fed's policy course.
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