Slow and Uncertain Recovery Ahead in 2021
Economies to Reach Pre-COVID Levels in 2022, Vaccine Key
Asian economists expect their economies to recover in 2021 following sharp drops in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. But with the future course of efforts to contain the virus still unclear, recovery could be slow. Economists project a return to pre-COVID-19 levels in 2022, not 2021. Asked about topics that will impact economies in 2021, respondents point to the effectiveness and availability of COVID-19 vaccines, after-effects of pandemic-related policies including increasing public debt, and the policies of new U.S. president Joe Biden.
The outcome of this survey was also reported at Nikkei Asia. (December 21, 2020)
◆ Main points of the survey
- The average growth forecast for the ASEAN5 for 2021 was 4.3%, turning positive from the -5.0% for 2020. Figures for both 2020 and 2021 were unchanged from the previous survey in September.
- The Indian growth forecast for fiscal 2020/21 was revised up by 0.2 points to -8.2%. The fiscal 2021/22 figure was also revised up by 1.0 point to 9.1%.
- The pace of economic decline is expected to ease in Q4 in all six countries. Growth figures are projected to turn positive in Q1 or Q2 2021.
- Many economists project an uncertain road to recovery as the effectiveness and availability the COVID-19 vaccine remains unclear.
- Projections show that most economies will return to pre-COVID-19 levels in 2022.
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, PT Bank Danamon Indonesia Tbk.
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; Emilio S. Neri Jr., vice president and lead economist, Bank of the Philippine Islands; Carlo Asuncion, chief economist, Union Bank of the Philippines; Victor Abola, senior economist, University of Asia and the Pacific
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: 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
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; Jyoti Vij, deputy secretary general, the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI)
For multiple countries: Euben Paracuelles, senior economist, Nomura Singapore; Rahul Bajoria, director, regional economist, Barclays Bank; Nicholas Mapa, senior economist, ING Bank Philippines
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