The Rise of Asia: Trade and Investment in Global Perspective

The Rise of Asia: Trade and Investment in Global Perspective

The Rise of Asia: Trade and Investment in Global Perspective

The Rise of Asia: Trade and Investment in Global Perspective

Synopsis

The Rise of Asia examines emerging trends and patterns of foreign trade and investment in Asia with a view to contributing to the policy debate on how development strategies should be adopted in response to challenges to economic globalization.

The existing body of knowledge in this subject area has predominantly been shaped by the experiences of the newly industrialized countries (NICs) in East Asia. This volume is inspired by the conviction that generalization from the NIC experience is hazardous because the on-going process of economic globalization over the past two decades has dramatically transformed the international context of national development policy making. Moreover, as 'embracing market', albeit at varying degree and rapidly, has now become an Asia-wide phenomenon, it is vital to look at the issues from a broader relational perspective, paying attention to opportunities for intra-regional division of labour within the wider context of global economic integration.

This book will be of interest to students and scholars with an interest in Asian studies, economics, political economy and globalization.

Excerpt

Over the past five decades, economies in Asia, particularly those in East Asia, have undergone a transformation that has been more rapid and extensive than in any other region in the world. By 1970, only Japan and the four Asian NIEs (newly industrialized economies) had decisively and successfully adopted outward-looking development strategies. These five countries, led by Japan, graduated quickly out of the earlier specialization in labour-intensive manufactures, opening up new export opportunities for latecomers to marketoriented policy reforms. By 1980, the three Southeast Asian economies – Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand – had begun to embark on this path, with Malaysia a clear leader. Following the decisive policy shift from ‘plan to market’ in the late 1970s, China has been emerging as the fastest growing economy in the world and a major hub for international production networks. Until recently, changes were occurring more slowly in South Asia, with the notable exception of far-reaching liberalization reforms in Sri Lanka in the late 1970s. India began to liberalize in the mid-1980s and the reform process accelerated following the macroeconomic crisis in 1991. From about the early 1990s the three economies of Indochina – Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia – began to open up their economies. By the turn of the twentieth century all major countries in the region, besides Myanmar and North Korea, had become more open to foreign trade and investmeg partner of the US, replacing Western Europe, economists began to speculate about the coming of the ‘Pacific Century’ (Linder 1986). The 1997–98 financial crisis that swept across East Asia had a devastating impact on the economies of a number of high-performing economies in the region, but contrary to the early gloomy predictions, the recovery came relatively quickly. By 2000, all crisis-affected countries had returned to levels of growth higher than in other developing countries, albeit lower than they enjoyed in the lead-up to the crisis (MacIntyre et al. 2008). With the Asia-wide embrace of market-oriented policy reforms, and in particular following the wakening of India from economic slumber to join the East Asia high-growth club, the twenty-first century has now come to be labeled the . . .

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