2019 Risk in Review Asia Pacific Report

Becoming a smarter risk taker in the digital era

PwC’s 2019 Risk in Review Asia Pacific Report sheds light on the opportunities and threats emerging from digital transformation as outlined by risk leaders in the region. The report delves into the strategies that risk leaders in Asia Pacific can use to manage risk arising from digital initiatives and broader market forces, and how they can become smarter risk takers in the long run. 

This report mainly draws on the findings of PwC’s 2019 Global Risk, Internal Audit and Compliance Survey which surveyed 2,073 leaders in risk management, compliance and internal audit globally from 99 territories and 27 industries. It presents the views of the 435 risk leaders based in Asia Pacific. The survey was conducted between October and November 2018.

Evolution of the risk landscape amidst macroeconomic uncertainty

The external environment is in a constant state of flux and companies in the region are having to deal with risks that transcend borders. The pessimism among Asia Pacific executives is related to the rising external risks that are threatening their growth prospects. From a business operations perspective, the availability of key skills, speed of technological change and cyber threats were cited by Asia Pacific executives as the top three threats to growth. These risks are inextricably linked to the pace of digital transformation occurring in the region.

Managing risks along the digital journey

The majority of Asia Pacific (and global) risk executives are still in the initial stages of building their digital roadmap. 

Asia Pacific leaders are slightly more likely to be risk takers than their global peers as a consequence of their digital roadmap. 

Activities and implementation of digital technologies among risk executives

Within the next two years, the majority of Asia Pacific as well as global risk leaders will incorporate emerging technologies into their risk management framework in order to anticipate and screen risks before they materialise. 

Looking at their use of digital technologies, Asia Pacific risk leaders are currently making use of compliance-specific technology applications as well as governance, risk and compliance tools to a greater degree than emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence, robotics process automation or Internet of Things (IoT).

Based on the findings of the 2019 Global Risk, Internal Audit and Compliance Survey, there are several key business implications for Asia Pacific risk leaders on what they can do to make their function more digitally fit. These are as follows: 

  • Devise a digital strategy and stick to it
  • Upskill and hire talent to ensure a digitally adept workforce 
  • Develop a risk-weighted decision making process with specific risk boundaries
  • Offer a unified view of the risk landscape among the three lines of defence
  • Integrate emerging technologies into the risk management process  
  • Promote stakeholder engagement on digital strategy decisions and reporting of KRIs 

Contact us

Jasper Xu

China Central Risk Assurance Leader, PwC China

Tel: +[86] (21) 2323 3405

Cimi Leung

Risk Assurance China and Hong Kong Markets & Growth Leader, PwC China

Tel: +[86] (20) 3819 2997

Stephen Ducker

Partner, PwC China

Tel: +[86] (10) 6533 2279

Claire Qian

Partner, PwC China

Tel: +[86] (21) 2323 3970

Eric Yeung

Partner, PwC Hong Kong

Tel: +[852] 2289 1953

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