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Updated by Unravel on Jul 22, 2021
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ECONOMY UPDATE

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Automation key to Malaysia’s digital transformation - Unravel

The success of Malaysia’s digital transformation will depend on strong political leadership, consistent government support, buy-in from key stakeholders like the business community and educators, and reskilling of its workers

China sets out key growth and innovation goals - Unravel

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang presented the 2021 government work report to the National People’s Congress on 5 March, in conjunction with an updated outline of the 14th Five-Year Plan (FYP) for 2021-2025 and “long-range objectives” through 2035.

Awareness and standardisation biggest challenges for Islamic finance - Unravel

The global Islamic finance expert talks about factors limiting the growth of the industry

Making RCEP successful through business-friendly rules of origin - Unravel

Expectations are high for the benefits to be gained from Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), which partners Southeast Asian nations with Australia, the People’s Republic of China, Japan, New Zealand, and the Republic of Korea.

Digitalisation for financial inclusion - Unravel

Inadequate access to financial services is a key development challenge across much of Asia. But as the region’s economies continue to grow and the mobile phone becomes near-ubiquitous, the continent has seen rapid strides made in the area of digitalisation of financial services.

Asia’s tech embrace and the promise of prosperity - Unravel

In this part, Ms Khanna talks about the importance of financial inclusion, the role of digital payments in supporting the post-COVID economic recovery, and also some of the emerging risks in this ecosystem that must be managed.

What the blocking of the Suez means for global trade - Unravel

In the early hours of March 23, the container ship Ever Given was blown off course by high winds on its way through the Suez Canal. At 400 metres long, the Ever Given is longer than the canal is wide, and the ship became wedged firmly in both banks, completely blocking traffic.

The growing acceptance of crypto-assets - Unravel

Crypto-assets and their underlying technology—blockchain—have been around for over a decade. Bitcoin, the name, is now familiar to most but without knowledge of what it really is. And this is not without reason.

COVID-19 a wake-up call to address Asia’s development fault lines - Unravel

Asia-Pacific needs to focus on holistic and inclusive development to ensure resilience written by Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana of United Nations under-secretary-general and executive secretary of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific

Where now for China’s Belt and Road Initiative? - Unravel

Chinese President Xi Jinping’s signature initiative BRI was already one of the most controversial issues on the international agenda prior to the arrival of COVID-19, a little more than a year ago. written by John West Executive director of the Asian Century Institute

Four strategies for a blue economy in Indonesia - Unravel

The World Bank's new 'Oceans for Prosperity' report provides policy recommendations for Indonesia to realise its Blue Economy written by David Kaczan (Economist at the World Bank) and André Rodrigues de Aquino (Senior Natural Resources Management Specialist, Environment and Natural Resources Global Practice at the World Bank)

A nonlinear recovery for China’s travel industry - Unravel

Like everywhere else, China’s travel industry was severely impacted by COVID-19. Once travel restrictions were eased in April last year—when many other countries were still entering into lockdowns—China’s travel industry started showing encouraging signs, albeit only in the area of domestic travel

China’s policy mix “proactive” and “prudent” in name, but tightening in practice

Françoise Huang, senior economist for Asia-Pacific at Euler Hermes, writes that China’s economic stimulus will not be saving the global economy this time round. In fact, there are already clear signs of its policy mix tightening.
Authorities in China are describing the policy mix in 2021 as “proactive” on the fiscal side, and “prudent” on the monetary side. However, China’s monetary policy already started to tighten in the fourth quarter of 2020, in sharp contrast to the world’s other major economies

RCEP, CPTPP and opportunities from ASEAN’s rise - Unravel

The RCEP and CPTPP cement Southeast Asia's growing role in global supply chains; it is now up to Singapore to keep its place as the gateway to a rising ASEAN, written by Azman Jaafar (Managing Partner and Head of the Indonesia Practice at RHTLaw Asia), Saravanan Rathakrishnan (Associate at RHTLaw Asia LLP)

The risk of emerging markets central bank overreach - Unravel

Emerging markets central banks have followed their developed market counterparts in deploying large quantitative easing programmes, and several could be at risk of having eased monetary policy too much. Written by Robert Subbaraman (Managing Director, Head of Global Macro Research at Nomura), Rebecca Wang (Macroeconomic Research Analyst, Asia ex-Japan at Nomura)

The evolution of the modern work week - Unravel

As the human race has evolved, the number of working hours per person have reduced. But this too varies across economies and changes are definitely on the horizon. The long-term impact of the pandemic on workplace culture and the office environment is still being understood. Written by Amit Kumar (CEO of OLX Autos, India)

Vietnam’s role as a global manufacturing hub will fuel growth - Unravel

Vietnam was one of only a few economies globally to grow in 2020. A strong recovery in export-orientated manufacturing fuelled a 2.9% gross domestic product (GDP) increase. Indeed, goods exports in USD terms were up 6.9% in 2020, which while a moderation from the 8.5% growth witnessed in 2019, was still a significant achievement considering that world trade in USD terms fell 7.8% in 2020.

The global impact of NFTs’ carbon footprint

Recently, international auction house Sotheby’s launched a collaboration with digital artist Pak, indie non-fungible token (NFT) platform hicetnunc broke over 1,000 transactions per day, and the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) launched commemorative IPO NFTs, written by David Shin, Head of TZ APAC

Growing a more resilient global food system

COVID-19 has been a stress test for the world’s food supply chains – and a preview of looming threats. That’s making the need for efforts to improve the journey from farm to fork more urgent than ever, written by Bob Holmes, a science writer in Edmonton, Canada, and the author of Flavor

The limits of India’s coercive economic power

Simply limiting access to its large domestic market cannot be an effective geopolitical and foreign policy tool for India, written by Ritesh Kumar Singh, Chief Economist of Indonomics Consulting and Former Assistant Director of the Finance Commission of India

The private sector’s role in post-pandemic recovery

In this interview, Nicolas Marquier, Singapore country manager at International Finance Corporation, a member of the World Bank Group that’s focused on private-sector development in less developed countries, talks about areas in which the private sector can support the economic recovery by helping create jobs, invest in innovation and plug a variety of financing gaps. He also talks about the changing nature of the relationship between governments and companies.

Asia's recovery will be built on relief, restructuring and resilience - Unravel

In this second part of our conversation, Nicolas Marquier, Country Manager, Singapore at International Finance Corporation (IFC)
speaks about the role of Singapore as a hub for the region, the IFC’s approach to supporting the private sector across the region through the downturn, and the long-term implications of an increased government role in the economy and on private sector development.

Trade can boost Malaysia’s post-pandemic recovery

In an interview, Dr. Ong Kian Ming, Former Deputy Minister of International Trade and Industry and current Member of Parliament for Bangi, Malaysia talking about Malaysian trade and its key role in economic recovery, and ratifying the CPTPP and RCEP could be pivotal first steps

Can Asia’s growth also be sustainable?

This is the first in a series of articles by Hiroki Sekine, Visiting Fellow, Asia-Pacific Programme at Chatham House, Director of the policy and strategy office for financial operations at the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC), that will look at the importance of green growth, and Asia’s role in achieving a low carbon economy

Website at https://unravel.ink/emerging-market-risks-lurking-in-the-shadows/

The financing of public deficits by commercial banks is a major risk in several emerging economies, write Robert Subbaraman, Managing Director, Head of Global Macro Research at Nomura, and Rebecca Wang, Macroeconomic Research Analyst, Asia ex-Japan at Nomura

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