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East and South Asia leading recovery of world economy from recession

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Governments in East and South Asia undertook aggressive monetary and fiscal measures to respond to the global economic crisis of the last two years, resulting in both regions leading the world’s recovery out of recession, according to a new United Nations report.

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The “World Economic Situation and Prospects” (WESP) projects East Asian economic growth of 6.7 per cent this year, the highest among all regions of the world, and South Asian economies coming in second with an expected growth of 5.5 per cent.

Both regions are rebounding from weak – but not calamitous – growth rates last year: East Asia recorded a rise of 4.3 per cent in 2009, following 6.3 per cent in 2008 and 9.3 per cent in 2007. In South Asia, the comparable rates were 4.1 per cent in 2009, 6.2 per cent in 2008 and 9.6 per cent in 2007. Each region’s 2007 growth rate was its highest for the entire decade beginning in 2000.

Tiziana Bonapace, Chief of the Macroeconomic Policy and Analysis Section at the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), will introduce the report along with Aynul Hasan, Chief of the Development Policy Section at ESCAP, at a press conference at 2:30 p.m. on Wednesday, 20 January at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Thailand (FCCT) in Bangkok.

The WESP warns that the mild global recovery projected in the baseline outlook is subject to high risks and uncertainties, mainly on the downside. The first is the risk of a premature “exit” from the stimulus measures in the major economies which could abort the still nascent recovery. The second relates to the risk of a re-emergence of the global macroeconomic imbalances which were part of the problem in the first place and could erode confidence in the United States dollar. These risks could become sources of renewed instabilities and cause a double-dip global recession which would affect the countries in East and South Asia given their dependence on world trade and finance.

While recognizing the important steps taken by the G20, the UN report calls for more intensive and inclusive international macroeconomic policy coordination. It also calls for deep systemic reforms in financial regulation and the global reserve system to ensure a more balanced and sustainable path of global economic growth.

Press conference to launch new report at 2:30 p.m. on 20 January at FCCT

For more information please visit the website:

or contact:

Mr. Newton Kanhema

UN Department of Public Information

Tel: +1-212-963-5602

Email: [email protected]

Mr. Bentley Jenson

UN ESCAP Information Services

Tel: +66-2 288-1869

Mobile: +66-84-080-5025

Email: [email protected]

via ESCAP Press Release: East and South Asia leading recovery of world economy from recession, UN says.

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50:50 campaign may not get immediate extension

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BANGKOK (NNT) – The government’s 50:50 co-pay campaign expiring on 31st March may not be getting an immediate campaign extension. The Minister of Finance says campaign evaluation is needed to improve future campaigns.

The Minister of Finance Arkhom Termpittayapaisith today announced the government may not be able to reach a conclusion on the extension of the 50:50 co-pay campaign in time for the current 31st March campaign end date, as evaluations are needed to better improve the campaign.

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The campaign has already been extended once, with the current end date set for 31st March.

The Finance Minister said that payout campaigns for the general public are still valid in this period, allowing time for the 50:50 campaign to be assessed, and to address reports of fraud at some participating stores.

The Fiscal Police Office Director General and the Ministry of Finance Spokesperson Kulaya Tantitemit, said today that a bigger quota could be offered in Phase 3 of the 50:50 campaign beyond the 15 million people enrolled in the first two phases, while existing participants will need to confirm their identity if they want to participate in Phase 3, without the need to fill out the registration form.

Mrs Kulaya said the campaign will still be funded by emergency loan credit allocated for pandemic compensation, which still has about 200 billion baht available as of today.

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