India to grow more than China: ADB report

10 April, 2017, 01:54 | Author: Lorraine Moran
  • A man rides an escalator at the Pudong financial district in Shanghai

India recorded a growth rate of 7.1 per cent during 2016-17, notwithstanding the fears that demonetisation of high-value currency notes of Rs 500/1,000 in November past year would adversely impact the economic growth. "As stance in our forecast, is wait-and-see on how things evolve in the United States", said ADB Senior Economist Arief Ramayandi in a briefing Thursday.

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) expects economic growth in the Philippines to moderate to 6.4 percent in 2017 as the rise in commodity prices tempers consumer spending.

Yumiko Tamura, officer-in-charge of ADB's Myanmar resident mission, said at the launch yesterday of the development lender's annual report that Myanmar's growth rate will hit 7.7 per cent this fiscal year and speed up to 8 per cent next fiscal year.

However, the ADB pointed to risks to its rosier outlook, including higher USA interest rates and rising household debt in some Asian economies.

The bank also said that while the eurozone was also strengthening, any potential growth was clouded by the uncertainty of Britain's decision to leave the European Union. The report states that the growth rate will continue to expand to 7.6% in the successive year (2018-19).

South Asia is the fastest growing subregion with expected growth of 7% this year and higher in 2018.

Asia is set to remain the world's biggest contributor to global growth in 2017, with activity picking up in two-thirds of the region's developing economies, according to the Asian Development Bank (ADB).

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Elsewhere, growth will be lifted by spending on natural disaster reconstruction in Nepal, hydropower investment and output in Bhutan, and economic corridor investment from the PRC in Pakistan.

"Even as growth moderates, rising global prices for oil should nudge domestic inflation up to 3.5 percent this year and 3.7 percent next year", said ADB, noting that the rate increased in January and February to the three-percent level because of higher fuel prices and public transportation fares.

With these prices turning upward over the forecast period, inflation in South Asia is projected to revive to 5.2 percent in 2017 and 5.4 percent in 2018.

"Possible shifts and trade tax policies, especially policy changes being discussed in the USA, could create uncertainty for business investment and export growth in developing Asia", the ADB said. Exports are forecast to grow by 6 per cent in the coming year.

Commodity producers such as Malaysia, Viet Nam, and Indonesia will be boosted by the recovery of global food and fuel prices, the new report added.

"Philippines, I think, is more resilient than other countries in Southeast Asia because the Philippines fundamentally is not export-driven economy". Overall output is expected to slow to 6.5% in 2017 and 6.2% in 2018, down from 2016's 6.7%. Last month, the US central bank raised the overnight rate for the third time since the global financial crisis.

However, Asian economies need to be wary of persistent domestic and external risks.

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