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Southeast Asia Working Papers

The ADB Southeast Asia Working Paper Series is a forum for stimulating discussion and eliciting feedback on ongoing and recently completed economic, sector, and policy work undertaken by ADB staff, consultants, or resource persons in the context of the Southeast Asia Department's (SERD) operational work. The series deals with economic and development issues in Southeast Asia and aims to enhance knowledge of Southeast Asia's development and policy challenges, strengthen subregional and country operations, and contribute to policy dialogue at the national and regional level.

  • 31 Jan 2012

    Biofuels in the Greater Mekong Subregion

    With increasing fuel demand projected for the Greater Mekong Subregion, biofuels could make a significant contribution to offsetting oil demand and to increased agricultural and rural incomes.
  • 1 Nov 2011

    Poverty, Income Inequality, and Microfinance in Thailand

    This paper provides a summary assessment of recent developments in poverty and income inequality in Thailand and discusses the role microfinance can play in addressing inequalities. Income inequality in Thailand is among the highest in Southeast Asia and particularly high in northeast Thailand. A contributing factor is the limited access to financial services and limited financial literacy of poor households. Thailand's microfinance sector is undeveloped compared to its regional peers; this has impeded poor families' access to financial services.
  • 1 Oct 2011

    Philippines: Designing a Local Government Enhancement Fund

    The main transfer instrument from the central government to local government units (LGUs) in the Philippines, the internal revenue allotment, has been criticized for: its inability to equalize sufficiently, especially regarding the poorer municipalities and provinces, and its funds not having been spent efficiently. For some time, LGUs have petitioned the Government of the Philippines to expand the funding of the IRA. However, there appears to be ample consensus that any additional funding needs to be distributed in a manner that addresses the design flaws of the IRA.
  • 1 Aug 2011

    Philippines: Private Sector Development: Challenges and Possible Ways to Go

    In the last decade, employment gains from economic growth in the Philippines have been limited, largely due to the underperformance of the private sector. Success of the services sector in general, and that of the business process outsourcing industry in particular, shows that reforms fostering private sector development can be effective. This working paper's objective is to inform preparation of the Asian Development Bank's country partnership strategy for the Philippines, 2011-2016.
  • 1 Nov 2009

    Trade and Growth Horizons for Nusa Tenggara Timur and Timor-Leste

    This report evaluates the prospects for trade and economic growth for two proximate economies in the Indonesian archipelago, Nusa Tenggara Timur (NTT), Indonesia, and the independent state of Timor-Leste (TIM). Both have very low incomes and predominantly rural populations (mainly subsistence farmers and food-insecure households), and both are at the early stages of development with limited regional and global trade linkages. TIM has historically been implicated in disruptive civil strife, which continues to pose risks to existing and prospective economic assets.
  • 1 Oct 2009

    The Contribution of ADB to the ASEAN Economic Community Blueprint

    The ADB Southeast Asia Working Paper Series is a forum for stimulating discussions and eliciting feedback on ongoing and recently completed economic, sector and policy work undertaken by ADB staff, consultants, or resource persons in the context of the Southeast Asia Department's (SERD) operational work. The series deals with economic and development issues in Southeast Asia, and aims to enhance knowledge of Southeast Asia's development and policy challenges, strengthen subregional and country operations, and contribute to policy dialogue at the national and regional level.
  • 1 Sep 2009

    Air Connectivity in Archipelagic Southeast Asia: An Overview

    Archipelagic Southeast Asia (aSEA) covers five member countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) - Brunei Darussalam, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Singapore - together with Papua New Guinea and Timor-Leste. The aSEA region includes the Brunei Darussalam-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines East Asian Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA) and the Indonesia-Malaysia-Thailand Growth Triangle (IMT-GT) subregional cooperation programs.
  • 1 Aug 2009

    Maritime Connectivity in Archipelagic Southeast Asia: An Overview

    Archipelagic Southeast Asia (aSEA) covers five Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) member countries - Brunei Darussalam, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Singapore - together with Papua New Guinea (PNG) and Timor-Leste.1 The aSEA region includes the Brunei Darussalam-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines East ASEAN Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA) and the Indonesia-Malaysia-Thailand Growth Triangle (IMT-GT).

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