The following provides highlights and key takeaways from the latest editions of ADB's flagship publication, the Asian Development Outlook.
COVID-19 continues to besiege developing Asia, but vaccines are changing the nature of the pandemic. Quicker rollouts of vaccines, successful containment, and strong global demand are enabling growth in some economies; new outbreaks and slower vaccinations are holding back recovery in others.
ADB is adjusting its 2021 growth outlook for developing Asia as renewed COVID-19 outbreaks, new virus variants, and an uneven vaccine rollout slow the recovery in some economies in the region.
Growth is gaining momentum across developing Asia. While renewed COVID-19 outbreaks show the pandemic is still a threat, the region’s economic revival is underway, supported by a healthy global recovery and progress on vaccines.
Economic activity in Developing Asia is forecast to contract by 0.4% this year, and then expand by up to 6.8% in 2021 as the region moves toward recovery from the effects of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.
The threat of a prolonged COVID-19 pandemic is the main risk to the outlook. A return to more stringent containment measures could slow or even derail recovery and possibly trigger financial turmoil. While economies in developing Asia remain resilient, continued policy support is needed to underpin recovery.
Growth in the region is expected to slow sharply to 2.2% in 2020 under the effects of the current health emergency and then rebound to 6.2% in 2021.