The Economic Outlook for Southeast Asia, China and India is a bi-annual publication on regional economic growth, development and regional integration in Emerging Asia. It focuses on the economic conditions of Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) member countries: Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Viet Nam. It also addresses relevant economic issues in China and India to fully reflect economic developments in the region. The 2017 edition of the Outlook comprises four main parts, each highlighting a particular dimension of recent economic developments in the region. The first part presents the regional economic monitor, depicting the near-term and medium-term economic outlooks, as well as macroeconomic and regional integration challenges in the region. The second part discusses the recent progress made in key aspects of regional integration. The third part presents this edition's special focus: addressing energy challenges and renewable energy development in particular. The fourth part includes structural policy country notes offering specific recommendations.
Since the start of the economic reform process in the 70s China has been able to generate a large volume of investment, both from domestic and foreign sources. This high volume of investment was instrumental in sustaining strong economic growth and related improvements in living standards. However, this growth model is not longer sustainable. Returns on investment have fallen, excessive capacity is plaguing several sectors and the negative externalities have been very onerous, notably in terms of environmental degradation and rising income inequality. A key objective of the Chinese government is therefore to move the economy towards a more balanced, sustainable and inclusive growth path as envisaged by the 13th Five-Year Plan. In this adjustment process, the country is seeking new approaches for smarter, greener and more productive investment. This will require mutually reinforcing reforms to improve investment planning, rebalance the role of government and market forces, mainstream responsible business conduct and encourage greater private investment, especially in green infrastructure. China’s growing role as an outward investor may act as catalyser for the required reforms at home, as Chinese private and state-owned enterprises have to adopt internationally recognised practices and standards .
China needs a new model of urbanisation to match the shift to a new model of growth. For decades, both urbanisation and growth have been based on robust export demand, cheap labour, cheap land and artificially low pricing of environmental externalities. None of these can support growth or urban development in the future. This review examines the major challenges associated with the shift to a new model of urbanisation, looking at a range such issues as social and labour-market policies, land use and transport planning, urban planning, urban governance and public finance. The review presents a new assessment of China’s major cities, which defines functional urban areas based on settlement patterns and commuting zones rather than cities defined as administrative units. The results show, among other things, that China has many more mega-cities, with populations above 10 million, than the official data suggest. The good news for China is that the reforms needed to foster what the authorities call “people-centred urbanisation”, while complex, are coherent with one another and supportive of the broader shift to a growth model that relies more on domestic demand and productivity growth.
China needs a new model of urbanisation to match the shift to a new model of growth. For decades, both urbanisation and growth have been based on robust export demand, cheap labour, cheap land and artificially low pricing of environmental externalities. None of these can support growth or urban development in the future.
As the significance of the creative economy continues to grow, important synergies with tourism are emerging, offering considerable potential to grow demand and develop new products, experiences and markets.These new links are driving a shift from conventional models of cultural tourism to new models of creative tourism based on intangible culture and contemporary creativity. This report examines the growing relationship between the tourism and creative sectors to guide the development of effective policies in this area. Drawing on recent case studies, it considers how to strengthen these linkages and take advantage of the opportunities to generate added value. Active policies are needed so that countries, regions and cities can realise the potential benefits from linking tourism and creativity. Key policy issues are identified.
Air pollution is costing advanced economies plus China and India an estimated USD 3.5 trillion a year in premature deaths and ill health and the costs will rise without government action to limit vehicle emissions, a new OECD report says.
Urbanisation in China has long been held back by various restrictions on land and internal migration but has taken off since the 1990s, as these impediments started to be gradually relaxed. People have moved in large numbers to richer cities, where productivity is higher and has increased further thanks to agglomeration effects.
Green Growth in Cities presents the OECD Green Cities Programme’s main findings and policy recommendations, and provides a preliminary approach to measuring green growth in cities
Skills and educational development for inclusive and sustainable growth are becoming significant drivers in OECD countries.
Located on the southern coast of China, Guangdong is the country’s most populous and rich province. It has 95.4 million inhabitants and provides one-eighth of the national GDP. A key development feature of Guangdong has been “processing trade”, which has allowed companies to profit from importing materials, assembling goods and exporting them via Hong Kong, China.
The recent economic crisis has had a strong impact on the province, although Guangdong also faces in-depth structural problems. Growing labour costs and strain on land availability have increasingly challenged the province’s traditional model of development, as have new competitors in China and abroad. Meanwhile, regional disparities within the province have increased, with a high concentration of economic activities and foreign direct investment in the Pearl River Delta area, an agglomeration of nine prefectures of 47.7 million inhabitants that represents 79.4% of the province’s total GDP.
This review assesses Guangdong’s current approach to economic development. The province is focusing on industrial policies primarily aimed at heavy manufacturing industries (e.g. automobile, shipbuilding, petrochemicals) and supported by investment in hard infrastructure transport projects and energy supply, along with the implementation of the “Double Relocation” policies intended to move lower value-added factories to lagging regions through incentive mechanisms like industrial parks.
The review discusses how some principles of the OECD regional paradigm could help Guangdong. It also addresses the huge environmental challenges that the province is facing and explores the opportunity for developing a green growth strategy. Strategies to improve Guangdong’s governance are analysed as well, with particular attention paid to co-ordination issues within the Pearl River Delta.
The Territorial Review of Guangdong is integrated into a series of thematic reviews on regions undertaken by the OECD Territorial Development Policy Committee. The overall aim of these case studies is to draw and disseminate horizontal policy recommendations for regional and national governments.