Asia's growth outlook steady despite external challenges: ADB

Source: Xinhua| 2018-12-12 11:01:21|Editor: Li Xia
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MANILA, Dec. 12 (Xinhua) -- Economies in developing Asia and the Pacific are weathering external challenges due to robust domestic demand, while inflationary pressures are abating, says a new report from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) released on Wednesday.

In a supplement to its Asian Development Outlook (ADO) 2018 Update report, ADB retained its regional growth forecast for 2018 at 6.0 percent and for 2019 at 5.8 percent.

Excluding the newly industrialized economies of China, South Korea and Singapore, the Manila-based bank said the regional growth outlook is remained at 6.5 percent this year and 6.3 percent for 2019.

The report says that lower international commodity prices and central bank action to calm market volatility means inflation in developing Asia is forecast to be 2.6 percent in 2018 and 2.7 percent in 2019, down from 2.8 percent previously forecast for both this year and next.

"We are keeping our forecasts for the region's growth unchanged for this year with some of the biggest economies continuing to hold up well," ADB Chief Economist Yasuyuki Sawada said.

According to the report, gross domestic product growth in Central Asia in 2019 is now forecast at 4.3 percent, up from the 4.2 percent forecast in the report released in last September, as a recovery in public investment and higher output from the Shah Deniz gas field enhance prospects in Azerbaijan.

South Asia's 2019 growth is now pegged at 7.1 percent versus the 7.2 percent forecast in September, the report says.

"Southeast Asia is expected to grow 5.1 percent in 2019 versus the previous forecast of 5.2 percent," the report predicts.

ADO is ADB's flagship annual economic publication. The publication provides a comprehensive analysis of macroeconomic issues in developing Asia, including growth projections for major economies.