The gradual lifting of pandemic restrictions is expected to stimulate investment, consumption, and tourism, according to the ADB, which predicts higher development for emerging countries in Asia and the Pacific this year.

The key element enhancing the region’s growth potential is the People’s Republic of China’s reopening as it shifts away from its zero-COVID strategy. According to the Asian Development Outlook April 2023, economies in Asia and the Pacific are expected to develop by 4.8% this year and the following year, outpacing the 4.2% growth rate in 2022.

Given the PRC’s quick reopening, developing Asia’s economic prospects have significantly improved. Population mobility in the PRC returned to normal, with the fastest pace of recovery occurring in the service sector. Through increasing demand for goods and services as well as supply chain connections, the PRC’s openness will foster regional growth.

Asian Development Outlook (ADO) April 2023: Key Messages

  • Growth in developing Asia is forecast at 4.8% this year and in 2024, up from 4.2% last year. The People’s Republic of China’s (PRC) recovery and healthy domestic demand in India will be the region’s main growth supports this year and next.​
  • Inflation is forecast to moderate this year and next, from 4.4% in 2022 to 4.2% in 2023 and 3.3% in 2024, gradually moving closer to pre-pandemic averages​.
  • An array of immediate and emerging challenges could still hold back the region’s recovery. Policy makers should stay vigilant in the post-pandemic environment of higher inflation, interest rates, and debt. Governments must continue supporting multilateralism, and lean against the risks of global fracturing.

Strong tourism performance and robust domestic demand are boosting Southeast Asian economies like Indonesia, the Philippines, and Viet Nam, with the subregion projected to grow by 4.7% this year and 5.0% in 2024.

With the lifting of the zero-COVID strategy in December last year, the PRC economy is expected to grow 5.0% this year and 4.5% in 2024, compared with 3.0% growth in 2022. India, meanwhile, is forecast to expand by 6.4% this year and 6.7% next year, due to healthy domestic demand.

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