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Global Economy

How Islamic finance is helping fuel Malaysia’s green growth

Victoria Kwakwa's picture
Photo: bigstock/ f9photos

Income growth is not the sole aim of economic development. An equally important, albeit harder to quantify objective is a sense of progress for the entire community, and a confidence that prosperity is sustainable and shared equitably across society for the long term.  

The Philippines: Resurrecting Manufacturing in a Services Economy

Birgit Hansl's picture
In recent years, the Philippines has ranked among the world's fastest-growing economies but needs to adjust to the demands of a dynamic global economy.

The Philippines is at a fork in the road. Despite good results on the growth front, trends observed in trade competitiveness, Global Value Chain (GVC) integration and product space evolution, send worrisome signals. The country has solid fundamentals and remarkable human assets to leapfrog into the 4th Industrial Revolution – where the distinction between goods and services have become obsolete. Yet it does not get the most out of this growth, especially with regards to long-term development prospects. In order to do so, the government will have to make the right policy choices.

Phenomenal development: New MOOC draws economic policy lessons from South Korea’s transformation

Sheila Jagannathan's picture

The World Bank Group’s Open Learning Campus (OLC) launched a free Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) today — Policy Lessons from South Korea’s Development — through the edX platform, with approximately 7,000 global learners already registered. In this MOOC, prominent representatives of academic and research institutions in South Korea and the United States narrate a multi-faceted story of Korea’s economic growth. 
Why focus on South Korea? South Korea's transformation from poverty to prosperity in just three decades was virtually miraculous. Indeed, by almost any measure, South Korea is one of the greatest development success stories. South Korea’s income per capita rose nearly 250 times, from a mere $110 in 1962 to $27,440 in 2015. This rapid growth was achieved despite geopolitical uncertainties and a lack of natural resources. Today, South Korea is a major exporter of products such as semiconductors, automobiles, telecommunications equipment, and ships.

Source: World Development Indicators, 12/16/2016

Services as a new driver of growth for Thailand

Ulrich Zachau's picture
Also available in: ภาษาไทย

There’s a good chance you work in the service sector. Services account for 17 million jobs in Thailand, or approximately 40 percent of the Thai labor force. It encompasses diverse industries such as tourism, retail, health, communications, transportation and many sought-after professions such as architects, engineers, lawyers and doctors. Many Thai parents aspire for their children to join the service sector, and the sector carries many of Thailand’s economic hopes and ambitions.

ภาคบริการ: ปัจจัยขับเคลื่อนเศรษฐกิจตัวใหม่ของประเทศไทย

Ulrich Zachau's picture
Also available in: English

มีโอกาสสูงที่คุณทำงานอยู่ในภาคบริการ  ประเทศไทยมีงานในภาคบริการถึง 17 ล้านตำแหน่งหรือร้อยละ 40 ของกำลังแรงงานไทย ภาคบริการครอบคลุมหลายอุตสาหกรรมทั้ง การท่องเที่ยว การค้าปลีก สุขภาพ การสื่อสาร การขนส่ง รวมถึงวิชาชีพที่เป็นที่ต้องการ อาทิ สถาปนิก วิศวกร นักกฎหมาย และแพทย์  พ่อแม่หลายคนหวังว่าลูกจะสามารถเข้าทำงานในภาคบริการซึ่งเป็นภาคที่ประเทศไทยได้ฝากความหวังด้านเศรษฐกิจและความมุ่งมั่นที่จะก้าวไปสู่ประเทศที่มีรายได้สูงไว้

ឥឡូវកម្ពុជាគឺជាប្រទេសដែលសេដ្ឋកិច្ចមានចំណូលមធ្យមកម្រិតទាប៖ តើមានន័យយ៉ាងណា?

Sodeth Ly's picture
Also available in: English
កំណើនសេដ្ឋកិច្ចរយ:ពេលពីរទសវត្សបានជួយកម្ពុជាឲ្យក្លាយជាប្រទេសឈានមុខក្នុងការកាត់បន្ថយភាពក្រីក្រ។ ជោគជ័យលើទិដ្ឋភាពនេះមានន័យថាប្រជាជាតិអាស៊ីអគ្នេយ៍មួយនេះបានជំនះសង្គ្រាមស៊ីវិលដ៏អាក្រក់ ហើយឥឡូវត្រូវបានក្រុមធនាគារពិភពលោក (WBG)​ ចាត់ថ្នាក់ថាជាប្រទេសដែលមានចំណូលមធ្យមកម្រិតទាប។
ប្រព័ន្ធចាត់ថ្នាក់ថ្មីឆ្នាំនេះមានមូលដ្ឋានផ្អែកលើកម្រិតគោលដែល​ WBG បង្កើតឡើងក្នុងប្រព័ន្ធមួយមានប្រភពនៅក្នុងឯកសារឆ្នាំ1989 របស់ខ្លួន ដែលគូសបញ្ជាក់វីធីសាស្រ្តនេះ។​  តារាងខាងក្រោមបង្ហាញកម្រិតផ្សេងគ្នានៃការចាត់ថ្នាក់ផ្អែកលើចំណូលជាតិដុល (GNI):

កម្រិតគោល GNI កក្កដា 2016
ចំណូលទាប <$1,025
ចំណូលមធ្យមកម្រិតទាប $1,026 - $4,035
ចំណូលមធ្យមកម្រិតខ្ពស់ $4,036 - $12,475
ចំណូលខ្ពស់ > $12,476

Boon or bane: Trade agreements in Malaysia

Smita Kuriakose's picture

In the past several decades Malaysia has witnessed strong economic growth and has become one of Asia’s newly industrialized countries. In one generation it transitioned successfully from low to upper-middle-income status, due in large part to outward looking policies, trade, and foreign direct investments (FDI) — which contributed to the successful diversification of the economy. Today, Malaysia faces the challenge of escaping the middle-income trap as its productivity slows and it becomes less competitive.
Free trade agreements (FTAs) such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and Malaysia EU-FTA bring the potential for greater market access for Malaysia. This new generation of free trade agreements offers opportunities for Malaysia to strengthen reforms beyond tariff reduction, covering commitments such as competition and investment policies, non-tariff measures, intellectual property rights, labour standards, and opening up government procurement for competition.  With a market-friendly government and a strong track record of reforms, there are new opportunities for reinvigorating structural reforms to support private sector-led economic growth. Accelerating productivity growth is a key element of the 11th Malaysia Plan, which aims to bring Malaysia to high income status by 2020.

Cambodia is now a lower-middle income economy: What does this mean?

Sodeth Ly's picture
Also available in: Cambodian
Two decades of economic growth have helped make Cambodia a global leader in reducing poverty.
The success story means the Southeast Asian nation that overcame a vicious civil war now is classified as a lower-middle income economy by the World Bank Group (WBG).
The new classification this year is based on thresholds set by the WBG in a system with roots in a 1989 paper that outlined the methodology. The table below shows the different levels of classification based on Gross National Income (GNI): 
Threshold GNI in July 2016
Low-income <$1,025
Lower-middle income $1,026 - $4,035
Upper-middle income $4,036 - $12,475
High-income > $12,476

Supporting inclusive growth in Cambodia

Victoria Kwakwa's picture
A Cambodian farmer. photo by the World Bank
A Cambodian farmer. Photo: The World Bank

Today, Cambodia is among the world’s fastest growing economies. Its gross national income per capita increased by more than threefold in two decades, from $300 in 1994 to $1,070 in 2015.

Strong economic growth has helped lift millions of people out of poverty.

The Cambodian people have benefited as the economy diversified from subsistence farming into manufacturing, tourism and agricultural exports. Poverty fell to 10% in 2013, from 50% in 2004. Cambodians enjoy better school enrollment, literacy, life expectancy, immunization and access to water and sanitation.

Firing up Myanmar’s economy through private sector growth

Sjamsu Rahardja's picture
Workers at a garment factory
Myanmar’s reintegration into the global economy presents it with a unique opportunity to leverage private sector growth to reduce poverty, share prosperity and sustain the nationwide peace process.
For much of its post-independence period, Myanmar’s once vibrant entrepreneurialism and private sector was stifled by economic isolation, state control, and a system which promoted crony capitalism in the form of preferential access to markets and goods, especially in the exploitation of natural resources. Reflecting this legacy, private sector firms are still burdened with onerous regulations and high costs, dragging down their competitiveness and reducing growth prospects.