Academic journal article Southeast Asian Affairs

Social Impact

Academic journal article Southeast Asian Affairs

Social Impact

Article excerpt

One of the worrying aspects of the crisis is the prospect of long-term damage to the economic and social fabric of the region. In Latin America the debt crisis of the 1980s resulted in a "lost decade", with the region taking nearly a decade to recover to pre-crisis levels of per capita incomes. The Latin American experience suggests the most affected group is likely to be the middle-income categories, especially those workers with fixed incomes in the urban areas. With the decrease in their incomes and the increase in the price of imported goods, the effect will be particularly felt in areas such as reduced levels of health care, food and nutrition (notably imported food items such as milk for infants and children), and education.

In most ASEAN countries essential medical products are imported. The devaluation will increase the costs of health care. At the same time the reduction of government budgets will eat into public health care programmes. Such factors, together with the decrease in household incomes, will undoubtedly reduce health care, especially for the poor.

One of the tragic coincidences of the financial crisis is that it occurred at a time when some countries in the region were going through their worst drought in decades as a result of the El Nino phenomenon. The currency devaluation aggravated this by increasing the domestic price of all tradable commodities, including food. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.