Past and Future of the Labor Force in Emerging Asian Economies

Publication | September 2010

This paper investigates the determinants of past changes in the labor force of 12 emerging Asian countries, and attempts to make projections of the labor force in those countries for the period 2010-2030. Results from the regression analysis indicate that the labor force has grown faster than the population, has an inverted U-shape relationship with per capita gross domestic product, and is smaller in more capital-intensive countries. Using extrapolation, the paper predicts that the labor force will increase in all 12 economies during the first 2 decades of the period 2010-2030, but will eventually decline in the People's Republic of China; Hong Kong, China; the Republic of Korea; Singapore; and Taipei,China. The paper also makes projections of the unemployment rate and the average working hours in those economies.

Contents 

  • Abstract
  • Introduction
  • Data Sources
  • Regression Analysis
  • Projection Method for the Labor Force Participation Rate
  • Projection Method for the Unemployment Rate
  • Projection Method for Average Working Hours
  • Description of Variables in the Data
  • Appendixes
  • References