Hong Kong remains the largest market in Asia for MBA courses despite the economic downturn, according to management studies academics at the University of Toronto. Professors Daniel Ondrack and Richard Kurovsky said the business administration masters course would be chosen by executives who wished to invest in their future through a qualification which made them more competitive in the job market. 'If people worry about their economic situation, higher education and better training for job security is a good investment,' Professor Ondrack told Campus Post. He said local demand for MBA courses had not been affected by financial upheaval in Southeast Asia because of the SAR's versatile and strong economy. Hong Kong also enjoyed a competitive edge compared to less cosmopolitan parts of Asia. 'Here, more people speak English, the international business language. As more MBA courses are in English, it is convenient to introduce MBA education in Hong Kong. 'The SAR is a good regional centre for higher levels of education. Its facilities are well-developed with good transportation and an attractive location,' Professor Ondrack said. While the market for MBA courses in Taiwan was huge, he said facilities were limited and only a few universities could offer the programme. The mainland had the potential to develop MBA education but language problems and a scattered population would restrict the progress of the course. Singapore had the potential to expand its MBA market because of the government's investment and commitment to education. Mr Kurovsky said Canada had experienced an economic downturn similar to Asia's a few years ago. 'Coming through the economic recession, we saw an active increase in the number of applications for MBA courses. People saw higher education as a kind of investment for a better future,' he said.