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Amid Slowing US Growth, Asia Becomes Netflix's Fastest-Growing Market

The streaming giant is exploding in popularity across Asia.

Nikkei Asian Review reports that from the first quarter of 2017 to the third quarter of this year, Netflix's sales in Asia reached US$382 million, a 153% increase compared to two years ago. The number of subscribers also grew 148% in the region to 14.5 million. 

Asia currently only accounts for 9% of Netflix's total subscriber base, but it is the platform's fastest-growing market. According to the news source, new original programming has allowed the California-based streaming giant to make inroads in major Asian markets.

Zenra Kantoku (The Naked Director) has proved popular in Japan, along with an anime series based on a character named Sanrio Aggretsuko. In South Korea, Kingdom has been a huge draw, while in India, Sacred Games has attracted subscribers.

Netflix is also working to bring in more Vietnamese subscribers. VnExpress shared earlier this month that seven Vietnamese movies have been added to its library, including Sieu Sao Sieu Ngo, Saigon Anh Yeu Em and Ngoi Nha Buom Buom.

In September, the company bought the rights to Hau Due Mat Troi, a Vietnamese remake of the South Korean TV show Descendants of the Sun. The show, which consisted of 48 episodes, aired on Vietnamese TV last year and was generally poorly received.

It remains to be seen when Netflix will create its first truly original Vietnamese-language movie or TV show.

Also in September, the Authority of Broadcasting and Electronic Information, part of the Ministry of Information and Communications, ordered LG, Samsung, TCL and Sony to remove the built-in Netflix app from their smart TVs sold in Vietnam.

In addition to Asia, Netflix has seen strong growth in Europe, the Middle East and Latin America, while subscriber growth fell in the US amid increasing competition from Amazon, Hulu, Disney Plus and Apple TV Plus.