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Moon eclipsed, AstraZeneca uncertainty

Wednesday’s landslide defeat for President Moon’s Democratic Party (DP) in key mayoral elections in Korea suggest that it faces an uphill battle to retain the presidency in next year’s vote. Defeat next year would have implications for economic policy and Korea’s relationship with China. Doubts about the safety of the AstraZeneca jab present a further challenge to Asia’s already-slow vaccine rollout. AstraZeneca accounts for the bulk of vaccine orders made by Thailand, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.
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Emerging Asia Economics Update

Pakistan: Further tightening needed, as IMF talks begin

High inflation and the fall in the currency were the two key factors behind the State Bank of Pakistan’s (SBP) decision to raise interest rates by a further 150bp today. More tightening looks inevitable, and much will depend on whether the government can agree terms with the IMF over the resumption of its US$6bn loan programme. Asia Drop-In (26th May, 0900 BST/16:00 SGT): Can Asia remain the low inflation exception? Join our 20-minute briefing about the region’s price and policy outlooks. Register here.

23 May 2022

Emerging Asia Economics Weekly

Asia late to tightening but won’t have to go far

Central banks in India, the Philippines and Malaysia have all raised interest rates for the first time this cycle in recent weeks, and we expect further hikes next week in Indonesia, Korea and Pakistan. But with inflation set to fall back in the second half of the year and growth likely to weaken, tightening cycles are unlikely to be aggressive. Our forecasts are generally more dovish than the consensus.
Asia Drop-In (26th May, 0900 BST/16:00 SGT): Can Asia remain the low inflation exception? Join our 20-minute briefing about the region’s price and policy outlooks. Register here.

20 May 2022

Emerging Asia Economics Update

Philippines: central bank will tighten gradually

The central bank in the Philippines (BSP) started raising interest rates today, but with inflation set to slow later in the year and the economic recovery likely to weaken, the tightening cycle is set to be gradual and relatively short. Asia Drop-In (26th May, 0900 BST/16:00 SGT): Can Asia remain the low inflation exception? Join our 20-minute briefing about the region’s price and policy outlooks. Register here.

19 May 2022

More from Emerging Asia Economics Team

Emerging Asia Economics Weekly

August rate hike in Korea, Indonesia outbreak

We were already more hawkish that the consensus in expecting a rate hike in Korea this year, but recent comments by the central bank and strong economic data mean we are shifting forward our forecast for the first hike to the Bank of Korea’s meeting on 26th August. Meanwhile, Indonesia’s government has introduced tough new restrictions to combat a jump in virus cases. Despite the worsening outlook, there is little prospect of monetary or fiscal policy being loosened further to support demand.

25 June 2021

Emerging Asia Economics Update

Taiwan: outbreak to weigh on consumption

The first major outbreak of COVID-19 in Taiwan has triggered the first significant restrictions on activity. Consumer spending will suffer, but the rest of the economy should still perform strongly.

17 May 2021

Emerging Asia Economic Outlook

Resurgent infections threaten recovery

Asia’s emergence from the pandemic has been threatened recently by a resurgence in infections across parts of the region. Most of South Asia, the Philippines and Thailand have had to introduce new restrictions to contain outbreaks of the virus, and we have cut our growth forecasts for a number of countries to reflect the worsening outlook. Elsewhere, China and Taiwan have already fully recovered from the crisis, while Vietnam is not far behind. Headline y/y growth rates in these economies will be flattered by base effects over the next couple of quarters, but in q/q terms growth will continue to slow. Central banks across the region are in no rush to tighten monetary policy. External factors won’t compel policymakers to tighten, and with inflationary pressures very weak, interest rates are likely to be kept low to support economic recoveries.

21 April 2021
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