Measuring Social Protection Expenditures in Southeast Asia: Estimates Using the Social Protection Index

Date: July 2014
Type: Papers and Briefs
Series: Sustainable Development Working Papers
Author: Handayani, Sri Wening


This paper provides a cross-country analysis of social protection programs in Southeast Asia. ADB’s Social Protection Index is used to assess program coverage, benefit-level, and impact on poverty and gender equity. While social protection expenditures differ across country income classifications, results show that total spending has remained low. Social insurance dominates total spending but only primarily benefits formal sector workers. Social assistance programs directly targeted to the poor remain underdeveloped. Labor market programs are inadequate. Evidences suggest that social protection expenditures need to be scaled up to increase benefits for the poorest and most vulnerable groups and cover moderately poor population.


  • Abstract
  • Introduction
  • Data and Methodology
  • Findings
  • Conclusions and Recommendations
  • References