Asia and Pacific regions contributed 34.9 per cent to global GDP in 2019: Report

The Asian Development Bank - ADB. Photo: The Financial Daily. Sketched by the Pan Pacific Agency.

DHAKA, Sep 10, 2020, Dhaka Tribune. The Asia and the Pacific region have contributed 34.9% to global gross domestic product (GDP) in 2019, up from 26.3% in 2000, Dhaka Tribune reported.

However, the Covid-19 pandemic is threatening the gains with rising unemployment and falling income, as lockdowns cause steep reductions in business operations and people’s activities in general.

The latest edition of the Asian Development Bank’s (ADB) annual statistical report for the region, Key Indicators for Asia and the Pacific 2020, launched on Thursday, made the observation.

The report presents a comprehensive set of economic, financial, social, and environmental indicators, including those for Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), for ADB’s 49 regional members from 2000 to 2019.

A key statistic in the report highlights that the region has become the biggest contributor to global gross domestic product (GDP), reaching a 34.9% share in 2019 from 26.3% in 2000.

“The Asia and Pacific region has made tremendous development progress over the last two decades, becoming the biggest contributor to global GDP while lifting millions of people out of poverty,” said ADB Chief Economist Yasuyuki Sawada.

“Timely and accurate data enable us to take stock of this progress and areas that require further improvement. Wide access to data, especially amid the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, will continue to contribute to the region’s progress on the path to more inclusive and sustainable development.”

The report also highlights the expanding influence of Asia and the Pacific in global investment and trade.

The region’s economies received more than one-third of total global direct investment in 2019, while the region’s global export share increased to 36.5% in 2019 from 28.4% in 2000, the report adds.

Report findings show that more than half of the reporting economies in the region recorded a GDP growth rate of 4% or higher in 2019.

These gains are threatened, however, by the Covid-19 pandemic, with unemployment rising and income falling as lockdowns cause steep reductions in business operations and people’s activities in general, the report says.

The report also identifies practical considerations and technical requirements for this novel approach to mapping the spatial distribution of poverty, while outlining the investments required by national statistics offices to fully capitalize on the benefits of incorporating innovative data sources into conventional work programs.

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