Digital education can boost growth in Emerging Asia, OECD Development Centre report finds
Bangkok, 2 November 2019 - Economic growth in Emerging Asia is expected to moderate in the near-term, according to the OECD’s Economic Outlook for Southeast Asia, China and India 2020. In the medium term, GDP growth in the region is projected to reach 5.7% in 2020-24, down from 6.7% in 2013-17. Private consumption will continue to stimulate growth while trade and investment seek stability. Southeast Asia is forecast to grow by 4.9% during the period, while China’s growth will come in at 5.6% and India’s will average 6.6%.
Tariff-related uncertainties and the grimmer growth picture in advanced economies are dampening export prospects for the region, despite historically low interest rates. Emerging Asia can use monetary tools to ease economic frictions, but it needs to reinforce the effectiveness of these policies. Additionally, in view of rising climate risks, the report calls on policy makers to strengthen the involvement of local governments in disaster resilience initiatives.
This year’s Outlook, launched at the 2019 ASEAN Business and Investment Summit in Bangkok, focuses on upgrading education policies for the digital era. “The education system in the region ought to keep abreast of the opportunities and challenges brought about by new technologies, such as robotics and artificial intelligence, and how they affect the way societies interact, produce and create,” commented Mario Pezzini, Director of the OECD Development Centre and Special Advisor to the OECD Secretary-General on Development.
Challenges for the region include equipping schools with sufficient digital infrastructure and training teachers in digital skills. The report suggests that school curricula include information and communications technology at all levels. Vocational education and lifelong learning could also foster digital inclusion and bridge the gender divide in use of the Internet.
For further information on the Economic Outlook for Southeast Asia, China and India 2020 and its country notes, please visit: www.oecd.org/dev/asia-pacific.
For more information, journalists are invited to contact Kensuke Tanaka, Head of Asia Desk, OECD Development Centre (Kensuke.Tanaka@oecd.org; Tel: +33 (0)6 27 19 05 19) or Bochra Kriout at the OECD Development Centre Press Office (Bochra.Kriout@oecd.org ; Tel: +33 (0)1 45 24 82 96).
About the report
The Economic Outlook for Southeast Asia, China and India 2020 is produced by the OECD Development Centre. This year’s Outlook is supported by the governments of Japan, Korea, Switzerland and the European Union.