Negative Growth Foreseen in Singapore, Thailand
Corona Shock Hits Asia, Unemployment Rise Looms
The outlook for Asian economies has greatly deteriorated due to the impact of the corona shock. With the ongoing spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), Asian economists have drastically lowered their growth outlooks. Some projections see negative growth rates for 2020 in Singapore and Thailand. Likewise Indonesia, the Philippines, and India face the end of several years of rapid growth at about 5% or more. Further downward revisions are expected if the virus is not contained. An increase in unemployment is projected throughout the region, and economists express concern about its potential social impact.
The outcome of this survey was also reported at Nikkei Asian Review. (April 6,2020)
◆ Main points of the survey
- Growth forecasts for five ASEAN countries and India were lowered drastically from the previous survey in December 2019.
- Some economists projected negative growth rates in 2020 for Singapore and Thailand due to negative effects of the corona shock, which include declining exports and decreasing tourism.
- The average 2020 growth forecasts for Indonesia, the Philippines and Malaysia were revised downward by 0.9 points, 1.4 points, and 2.2 points respectively from the previous survey.
- The Indian growth projection for fiscal 2019/20 was 4.9%, down 1.2 points from the figure achieved in 2018/19. Economists do not expect recovery in 2020/21.
- Unemployment is expected to increase throughout the region.
- Most projections are made on the assumption that the spread of coronavirus infection will be contained in the first half of 2020. If it is not, further downward revisions are inevitable.
◆ List of survey respondents
Indonesia: Juniman, chief economist, Maybank Indonesia; Dendi Ramdani, head of industry and regional research department, Bank Mandiri; Umar Juoro, senior fellow, The Habibie Center; Wisnu Wardana, economist, Bank Danamon Indonesia
Malaysia: Suhaimi Ilias, chief economist, Maybank Investment Bank; Wan Suhaimie bin Wan Mohd Saidie, head, economic research, Kenanga Investment Bank; Vincent Loo Yeong Hong, senior economist, KAF Research
Philippines: Alvin Ang , director, Ateneo Center for Economic Research and Development, Ateneo de Manila University; Jonathan Ravelas, chief market strategist, BDO Unibank Inc.; Pauline Revillas, research analyst, Metrobank; Nicholas Mapa, senior economist, ING Bank Philippines; Emilio S. Neri Jr., vice president and lead economist, Bank of the Philippine Islands; Victor Abola, senior economist, University of Asia and the Pacific; Carlo Asuncion, chief economist, Union Bank of the Philippines; Mitzie Conchada, associate dean, school of economics, De La Salle University
Singapore: Manu Bhaskaran, CEO, Centennial Asia Advisors; Randolph Tan, director, Centre for Applied Research, Singapore University of Social Sciences; Yuma Tsuchiya, senior economist, MUFG Bank, Ltd.
Thailand: Panundorn Aruneeniramarn, assistant vice president, Siam Commercial Bank – Economic Intelligence Center; Nattaporn Triratanasirikul, assistance managing director, Kasikorn Research Center; Somprawin Manprasert, head of research division and chief economist , Bank of Ayudhya PCL; Amonthep Chawla, head of research, CIMB Thai Bank; Naris Sathapholdeja, head of TMB analytics, TMB Bank PCL
India: Punit Srivastava, head of research, Daiwa Capital Markets India; Dharmakirti Joshi, chief economist, CRISIL; Sonal Varma, India chief economist, Nomura India; Tirthankar Patnaik, chief economist, National Stock Exchange of India; Dilip Chenoy, secretary general, the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FCCI)
For multiple countries: Euben Paracuelles, senior economist, Nomura Singapore
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