Toward Green Growth in Southeast Asia


In the context of the 2012 East Asia Climate Partnership (EACP) programme, the OECD has engaged in a 2-year horizontal project whose overarching objective is to help promote green growth in ASEAN countries in line with the region’s development objectives. Building on the OECD expertise on green growth, this work will follow up on the OECD Green Growth framework and the OECD Development Strategy which will be tailored to the specificities of ASEAN economies.

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The project is divided into 3 scopes:


1. Synthesis paper: “What have we learned from attempts to introduce green growth policies?”, published in the OECD Green Growth Papers series in March 2013.

The paper discusses green growth instruments, policy frameworks and indicators. Relying on both country-specific and cross-country analyses undertaken at the OECD, it seeks to draw lessons applicable to green growth policies from experience in OECD countries and elsewhere. Key conclusions of the paper are:  i) Green growth policies are likely to have beneficial welfare effects in the long-term, but short-term transition costs have hampered their implementation; ii) The main challenges implementing green growth frameworks relate to coordinating policies and developing indicators and instruments to monitor progress; iii) Innovation is key to foster green growth and could be encouraged by a mix of policies; and iv) Countries are concentrating more and more effort to invest in resilient infrastructure and adaptation policies but additional public and private financing needs to be mobilised. 



2. Forthcoming report
: “Toward Green Growth in Southeast Asia”, to be published in the second half of 2014. 

The report will cover emerging and developing economies ASEAN economies with China being used as comparative country. The analysis will rely on previous OECD research and expertise on green growth as well as the academic literature and analysis from national and international organisations. The report will comprise four chapters:

  • The first chapter will set the scene and review the main economic, social and environmental trends in the last decade in ASEAN economies. New empirical analysis on greening productivity would also be presented.

  • The second chapter will examine how green growth strategy can be best incorporated into national development plans which represent an important facet of economic policy in emerging and developing Asia. The chapter will discuss how to enhance policy coherence and local administration capacity and how to develop tools to design green growth policies and monitor implementation progress.

  • The third chapter will examine how to achieve a sustainable management of natural resources with specific references to forests, fisheries, energy and minerals. More specifically, the chapter will seek to identify ways to sustainably exploit forests and fisheries, increase the share of renewable energy sources in the total energy mix and improve the transparency and taxation of extractive industries. It will also look at the issue of how to best protect biodiversity.
  • The fourth chapter will review the challenges stemming from rapid urbanisation, and recommend national policies to manage cities’ growth so that they contribute – rather than undermine – green growth goals.  The chapter presents the costs of unsustainable urban development and policy options to address them, particularly vulnerability to climate change impacts, air pollution from transport, and lack of access to basic water and sanitation services.

‌Source: International Energy Agency (IEA), Southeast Asian Eenergy Outlook, 2013


3. Database of green growth indicators
for Southeast Asian countries in the final stage of the project. 

As part of its Green Growth Strategy, the OECD has developed a conceptual framework and indicators that help governments monitor progress towards green growth. The database on green growth indicators for emerging and developing Asian countries will build on the framework and progress of the OECD green growth indicators database, and extend it to ten ASEAN countries. The aim is to apply the OECD indicators to the ASEAN region as a way to identify key areas of national concern and the scope for improving the design, choice and performance of policy instruments.

For further details on the OECD green growth indicators, please visit the website and the database. The Towards Green Growth: Monitoring Progress report provides the methodological framework.

 Oveview of key dates: 

March 2013 Publication of the synthesis paper: “What have we learned from attempts to introduce green growth policies?”.
June 2014 Regional workshop with ASEAN countries' representatives and stakeholders in the region to discuss preliminary conclusions of the “Toward green growth in Southeast Asia” report.
End of 2014 Launch of the report "Toward green growth in Southeast Asia" and the database of green growth indicators for Southeast Asian countries.

Related work and publications: 

Putting Green Growth at the Heart of Development

This book presents evidence that green growth is the only way to sustain growth and development over the long-term. Green growth does not replace sustainable development, but is a means to achieve it. Green growth values natural assets, which are essential to the well-being and livelihoods of people in developing countries, and if policies are designed to respond to the needs of the poorest, green growth can contribute to poverty reduction and social equity.

Putting Green Growth at the Heart of Development

Towards Green Growth

The Green Growth Strategy, outlined in this book, provides concrete recommendations and measurement tools to support countries’ efforts to achieve economic growth and development, while at the same time ensure that natural assets continue to provide the ecosystem services on which our well being relies. The strategy proposes a flexible policy framework that can be tailored to different country circumstances and stages of development. 

 ‌Towards Green Growth

Green Growth in Cities

This report synthesises the findings from six case studies of urban green growth policies, four at city level (Paris, Chicago, Stockholm, Kitakyushu) and two at the national level (China, Korea). It offers a definition of urban green growth and a framework for analysing how it might play out in different types of cities. It demonstrates the importance of urban policies for achieving national environmental policy goals and discusses the increased efficiency of policy intervention at the urban level.

 Green Growth in Cities

Southeast Asian Energy Outlook 2013 

The ten members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) are – along with China and India – shifting the centre of gravity of the global energy system to Asia. Southeast Asia is an extremely diverse set of countries with vast differences in the scale and patterns of energy use and energy resource endowments.  This special report, in the World Energy Outlook series, assesses the prospects for Southeast Asia’s energy future as well as the implications for regional and global energy  markets and policy making. 


Southeast Asian Economic Outlook 2013 with Perspectives on China and India (SAEO)

An annual publication which focuses on the economic conditions of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) member countries. It provides an update of regional economic trends and policy challenges, a thematic focus which varies in each volume and country specific structural policy notes. The SAEO 2013 focuses on narrowing the development gap in the region focusing on disparities “among” and “within” Southeast Asian countries.

Southeast Asian Economic Outlook 2010

For more information contact: 

M. Pisu, Project Leader, OECD Development Co-operation Directorate, Phone: +33 1 45 24 87 04, Email:

A. Robert, Policy Analyst, OECD Development Co-operation Directorate, Phone: +33 1 45 24 83 19, Email:

J. Corfee-Morlot, Head, Climate Change, Environment and Development Programme and DAC ENVIRONET Co-ordinator, OECD Development Co-operation Directorate, Phone: + 33 1 45 24 79 24, Email:

N. Girouard, Green Growth and Sustainable Development Coordinator, OECD Environment Directorate, Phone: + 33 1 45 24 84 82, Email:


Related Documents


Green growth and sustainable development

Green Growth and Sustainable Development Forum 2013: How to unlock investment in support of green growth?

Key OECD documents on green growth


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