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In the future, these frameworks for regional cooperation will need to be used as the basis for creating and developing efficient markets that are consistent with the global financial system and effective financial intermediation services. Particularly important will be better use of the human resources that are involved in all of the other elements. The currency crisis taught the importance of emphasizing "manufacturing," and stronger efforts must be made in this regard, but "building people" is at the foundation of "building things," and so a new emphasis on human resources development will be one of the central hurdles facing Asia.
Japan has excellent manufacturing technology and expertise, but this cannot be transferred merely by providing design drawings and manuals. It is only achieved by medium- and long-term "people building. Exchange at the student level will be important in building good relations with Asian countries in the future. Currently, far more students in Asian countries wish to study in Europe or America than in Japan, and this is evidence of several problems: the lack of Japanese language education in Asia, the lack of internationalization in Japanese universities, and the relative lack of merits to studying in Japan.
Japan itself will need to make improvements in order to provide more incentives for foreign students to study here. We must also actively work to create environments that will encourage more young Japanese people to study abroad in Asia. It is important that, as Japan's society grows older, these human resources be used for the prosperity of Asia, and that further enhancements are made in human interaction and exchange, including at the student level. Japan must include cooperation and exchange in the area of human resources as one of the major focuses of its Asia policy.
Though faced by its own economic difficulties, Japan provided assistance for the Asian countries when they were in economic crisis. In addition to ordinary yen loans, it established the New Miyazawa Initiative and a special yen loan program. These active efforts to deal with crisis have been a major aid to the recovery of Asian economies and have created a strong image in the minds of Asian countries of Japan as a true friend.
As a "sworn friend" of Asia, Japan must actively provide Asian countries with resources in the areas of people, goods, money, and information, and must use its insights and wisdom to take the initiatives expected of it in leading Asia to common prosperity. It is essential that Japan itself be open to Asia and the world if it is to meet these expectations. Now is the time for a "third opening" of our country. South Korea is moving steadily forward with economic structural reforms as it endeavors to solidify its position in the aftermath of crisis.
Reforms are still incomplete, however, and economic upturns cannot be allowed to cause them to slowdown or cease. Following are the major challenges before South Korea in reform:. Japan must cooperate with South Korea in the spirit of building the new partnership as advanced countries. For example, Japan and South Korea might provide joint cooperation for third countries, or they might be able to engage in mutual monitoring of economic trends and capital movements to prevent recurrences of crisis.
It will also be important to study bridge facilities and other back-up systems to respond to crisis. Japan might additionally provide human resources and expertise for the clean-up of non-performing loans. The South Korean investment climate and market access have improved for Japanese companies since the economic crisis, and progress has been made in cultural opening as well, although Japanese companies are not sufficiently aware of this.
Rather than being obsessed with the images of the past, we must reevaluate the new and greatly changed Korea of today. We must also engage in further cooperation to remove the remaining impediments to investment and market access between Japan and South Korea as mandated in the "Japan-Korea Economic Agenda 21" agreement signed by the Japanese and Korean leaders of state in March More specifically, in the immediate future work should move forward on investment agreements and mutual recognition, and we should actively pursue tighter economic relations between the two countries, including strategic tie-ups between companies from both.
As an extension of these efforts over the long term, we should seek to achieve a free trade agreement FTA. In the latter half of the eighties, Vietnam embarked on reforms designed to marketize its economy and open itself to the outside. However, when the Asian currency crisis caused trade and investment to slump in the region, Vietnam's export competitiveness declined against its neighbors, and since its growth rate has been significantly blunted.
Japan already provides support for structural reforms in Vietnam.
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Examples include the Comprehensive Policy Study on Marketization the Ishikawa Project and assistance for the formulation of programs to foster the private sector conditional upon economic reform assistance loans granted under extensions to the New Miyazawa Initiative. Japan should continue and expand these policy dialogues, and should provide the government and state enterprises of Vietnam with the human resources required to ensure that reform plans are appropriately reflected in actual policies.
This would include sending in Japanese experts on law, taxation, fiscal policy, trade, and industry, and also high-level policy advisors capable of adjusting and coordinating policies. As a member of ASEAN, Vietnam will need to enhance its backward economic and social base in order to achieve economic development on par with its neighbors. In addition to ordinary yen loans, Japan needs to provide special yen loans as it continues to aid Vietnam in these infrastructure improvements. With the fall of the baht in July , Thailand was the country in which the Asian currency crisis started, and in it recorded its worst negative growth in history.
However, in calm began to be restored in the Thai economy, and recovery is now under way. There are urgent issues that Thailand must address in order to overcome the currency crisis and consolidate stable, sustainable growth. These issues can summarized in the three points below. Malaysia's response was unique among the countries hit by currency crisis; it refused all assistance from the IMF, and instead imposed restrictions on capital transactions and fixed foreign exchange rates to insulate its economy from foreign speculation.
It also moved dynamically to stimulate its economy with easier money and higher fiscal outlays, injected capital into its banks, purchased defaulted credits, reorganized its financial systems, and moved actively to restore its financial system to a sound footing. The Malaysian economy is now in recovery, and the country deserves high praise for its efforts, under the leadership of Prime Minister Mahathir, to solve its problems on its own.
The Malaysian economic recovery has finally gotten under way, and financial cooperation from Japan will continue to be extremely important to its success. Malaysia has particularly large expectations for Japan in the areas of human resources development and transfers of technology and expertise. Japan should use yen loans and other mechanisms to provide active support. It is also desirable that Japan share its experiences with Malaysia and act as a good advisor for the country's efforts to train the human resources required to advance its industry, develop its supporting industries, and reform its financial sector.
This is a country that is quite willing to listen to complaints from foreign companies, particularly Japanese companies. If there are problems, they should be pointed out and discussed frankly. The process of political stabilization is moving steadily forward in Indonesia. General elections were held without incident, and President Wahid was chosen at the end of October, according to democratic processes. Obviously, stable political environments and fair, transparent political systems are essential to energetic economies, and it is expected that Indonesia will continue to move forward with reforms in its political and economic spheres.
Improvements in transparency and accountability are of particular importance. The Wahid Government faces many challenges in the macroeconomic environment. While political processes have made progress, the situation remains unstable. Among the issues to be addressed are programs for the socially vulnerable, expansions to the scope of economic legislation, rebuilding of the banking sector, and alleviation of the debt problems at private companies.
The Asian currency crisis did not hit the Philippines as hard as it did its neighbors, but it did have measurably negative impacts on the growth rate and poverty conditions. Economic growth has worsened from a real GDP growth rate of 5. It is urgent that the Philippines quickly overcome the economic problems raised by the crisis, so that the country is able to achieve sustainable economic growth. It will also need to alleviate poverty by securing efficient administration of the economy, timely implementation of important policies, and improvements in national social welfare.
There are great expectations on Japan and there is much that it can contribute to securing economic growth and public welfare in the Philippines. During its visits to the six countries discussed above, the Mission also visited Singapore and held discussions there. Singapore was not directly hit by the currency crisis, but it has nonetheless felt the impact of slumping regional economies. Its growth rate slowed in , although it is once again turning in high growth now. Discussion of the status of minority groups and government policies toward them is frequently politicised by history, memory, war, border politics, and broken promises.
This snapshot of the status of ethnic and religious minority groups in the region highlights evolving policy frameworks and signs of progress in extending equal rights and protections to all citizens. Progress in protecting minority rights varies greatly across the region. Some countries are going backwards. In other countries, territorially concentrated minorities still struggle against the perceived injustices of majority rule. Patricio Abinales explains why, in the Philippines, a misreading of history continues to obstruct a peace deal with the Moro of Mindanao.
The question of Tibet is similarly fraught with competing versions of history and national identities. Robert Barnett suggests how clearer problem analysis could point the way to a resolution. Eun Jeong Soh outlines the difficulties for minorities in the Korean peninsula, where ethnic nationalism is hardening and ideas of multiculturalism have failed to take root. Nicholas Farrelly shows that democratisation in Myanmar has not dislodged notions of a single centralised union, where minority claims to self-determination and autonomy are vigorously rejected and forcibly kept in check.
Sebastien Carrier reminds us that not all minority concerns are political. Among the Hmong in China, for example, there are concerns for the protection of cultural rights, which are promised under the law but inconsistently delivered in practice. About this issue The first step in understanding Chinese state-owned enterprises is the distinction that we need to make between the giant, central SOEs dominating strategic industries from Beijing and the tens of thousands of provincially and locally owned SOEs.
While SOEs remain a prominent feature of the Chinese economy, they now account for only 30 per cent of industrial output and even the huge central SOEs are supposed to run at arm's length from the state-an issue that is currently a focus of China's Third Plenum reform agenda. In our regular Asian Review on major trends and developments, we cover the crucible of terror in Pakistan, the global growth of yoga, the Asian middle class and what it is not, and what's to become of the Australian economy now the party from the Chinese commodity boom is over.
The relationship between the state and economic enterprise is a central choice that governments have to make in all economies. Some argue that in all the economies of Asia that have enjoyed or are now prosecuting successful industrialisation—Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Singapore, Indonesia, India and China, for example—the state has played a central role through active participation in economic enterprise.
To others this is a controversial conclusion and they posit an alternative view, that successful Asian industrialisation is a story of removing the shackles of the state from economic enterprise. The first step in understanding Chinese state-owned enterprises is the distinction that we need to make between the giant, central SOEs dominating strategic industries from Beijing and the tens of thousands of provincially and locally owned SOEs. Market competition and the corporatisation and privatisation of many loss-making SOEs in the s have seen the environment in which they operate change dramatically.
That seems the way of the future.
About this issue After two decades of stagnant growth and the Fukushima triple disaster, Japan appears more confident both domestically and internationally. Japan has continued to contribute to the peace and stability of the region, underpinned by the US alliance and the Article 9 peace clause of its constitution.
As many authors in this issue detail, Japan needs to transform how women and foreigners are treated, open up protected sectors to competition and to rethink many of its institutions. A real test for Abe and Japan moving forward will be managing the relationship with China, which has until now been dismal. After two decades of stagnant growth and the Fukushima triple disaster, Japan appears more confident both domestically and internationally. The economy has been inflated, much-needed social change is being discussed and progress is being made, and international diplomacy is once again active.
Slower growth is to be expected with an ultra modern economy that has a shrinking population. And Japan has continued to contribute to the peace and stability of the region, underpinned by the US alliance and the Article 9 peace clause of its constitution. As the last East Asia Forum Quarterly on Japan in concluded, if Japan was thought to have had two lost decades since the bubble burst in the early s, perhaps we need to rethink what failure is.
Japan is secure, rich and prosperous. What has changed in the last 18 months is the renewal of Japanese confidence. The economic policy package of Prime Minister Abe—Abenomics—is bold and defines a clear strategy for economic growth. What is still to be seen is whether the difficult reforms necessary for the success of this strategy will be delivered.
The jury is still out and the longer we have to wait for those reforms to be put in place, the larger the risks to the economy from the first two arrows of Abenomics: the printing and spending of money. Signs of weakness are beginning to show in the recovery. About this issue With its elevation to a leaders' summit five years ago, the G20 is now the premier forum for global economic governance.
The challenge now is to create sustainable global growth based on real productivity gains and new long-term jobs in the value-added chains of the products and services of the future. Above all, G20 leaders have to ensure that key global economic institutions are robust and able to withstand unexpected shocks if and when they occur. This issue of EAFQ also launches a new feature: four essays on major trends and developments in the region. The formation of the G20 is a major achievement, perhaps even the most important achievement of international economic diplomacy in recent times.
Most observers believe that this initiative made a decisive difference in preventing the global financial crisis from developing on a scale that threatened to have consequences as damaging as the Great Depression of the s. The G20 summit brought a fundamental change in the structure of global economic governance. The inclusion at the table of five asian economies, in addition to Japan, recognised the shift in the structure of economic power that made the old order, dominated by the G7, obsolete.
Leaders can add value, for example, in addressing big questions about whether the global trade regime is headed in the right direction and how to shape the investment regime. About this issue What is happening to Asia's edges-spatially, metaphorically, economically?
Economic history of China (1949–present)
This issue of the EAFQ examines the prospects of places that tend to be overlooked by many international policy specialists. These essays have been selected for their potential to illuminate Asia in four important ways. Today both Myanmar and Mongolia are steering economic, political and diplomatic development alongside their giant neighbours. For Mongolia, its relationships with China and Russia have motivated a bold and inclusive foreign policy, one that has successfully cultivated new ties from western Europe to Australia.
In the case of Myanmar, the post-dictatorship government is using its fresh democratic credentials to escape the suffocating embrace of China. We look to places where edges mean borders and frontiers. In Bangladesh and northeast India the management of cross-border issues is enduringly problematic. Being on the edge in Asia also can imply a heightened sense of anxiety.
Issues explored in this Quarterly—from dam developments on the Mekong and land disputes in Cambodia to the parlous security situation in Pakistan and the dangers of North Korean brinksmanship—all give extra reasons to worry. It is unclear that Asia has the institutional structures or the unanimity of purpose to support long-term solutions.
Finally, at the edge we should be getting ready for the next big thing. Post-conflict development remains a major challenge in a number of countries. Vietnam has shown the way. Sri Lanka and Myanmar aspire to such success. The lessons they can all learn from the resource-rich states of central Asia should not be ignored.
For now, the edges of Asia are where we can judge the early indications of the most overwhelming changes. In the countries adjacent to China and India, the 21st century will present disorderly opportunities, grave possibilities and the chance of something better. About this issue What next for Indonesia? By any measure, the past 15 years has been a period of extraordinary progress.
Yet for all the impressive gains, there is a widespread sense—especially inside Indonesia—that the early pace of progress has fallen away; even that the country is now just marking time and waiting for whatever the electoral cycle might yield. The essays in this EAFQ reflect the unease about the chances of being able to keep on the right track.
Indonesia is an unambiguous economic success story. Sustained growth has lifted living standards, lowered the incidence of poverty, and underpinned social stability and political reform. The country now faces increasingly acute bottlenecks in key areas of economic infrastructure. The grand plans for upgrading infrastructure trumpeted over the past decade have not been realised.
Inadequate capacity for generating electricity is emerging as a major constraint in many areas. And the education system is falling further behind in the fundamental task of producing an adequately skilled workforce. The good news is that they will do so from within the context of a relatively established democratic system of government.
The bad news is that Indonesia's system of government is unwieldy, with authority and responsibility blurred between the executive and legislature, and between the national and local levels of government. Whatever the policy agenda, whoever the leaders, this is a difficult system to operate.
Internationally, Indonesia has emerged as an active and effective player on the regional and even global diplomatic stages. Although it is likely the next president will be, either by temperament or necessity, more domestically oriented, Indonesia will remain pivotal to regional affairs. Other countries—and none more so than Australia—need to recalibrate their mindsets about Indonesia.
About this issue The members of the fifth-generation leadership, with President Xi Jinping and Premier li Keqiang at its core, have been in their party places for a year and in government positions for half a year. As the articles by international experts in this issue of EAFQ make clear, this is a leadership that practices incremental reform. In internal issues, like managing the falling growth rate and the structural issues of increasing consumption, supporting sustainability and making the Chinese economy more competitive, it is a leadership that maintains faith in the market but also in state control.
Its members support privatesector development and greater international access to the domestic market—but only up to a point. They continue to plan policy around what they perceive as us attempts at containment and a Japan whose behaviour over the senkaku—diaoyu islands is curtailing their strategic space. The Xi—li leadership has been working within a framework created by its predecessors, but one which put GdP growth ahead of almost everything else.
But as these articles show, the challenges in creating political consensus among a highly fractured polity remain dauntingly high. And it is too early to say just how radical the new leaders will be as reformers when the time comes to make choices between the options available to them. About this issue No matter how one looks at the numbers, the Asian economies are bound to have a central role in the global economy this century. This fact has many implications. First, it suggests where the opportunities for growth are going to be over the coming decades.
Already the Asian economies account for almost 40 per cent of global output. The Asian century is here. On conservative estimates of relative income and population growth, the middle classes in Asia will grow to 3. The rise of China, and also India, challenge the role of the established European and North American industrial powers in a number of ways.
Some things are clear, though they may have been thus far under-recognised.
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China, India and the other Asian powers will have a greater role in global affairs. But there is much that is yet to be determined, and it is clear that this theme is one to which we will return. About this issue By Asia will add another billion to its already huge population of 4. Somewhat perversely, demographers see this as a good result, not because the population will grow but because the outcome for is several billion lower than it would have been without the spread of control over human fertility that has occurred over the past four decades.
Demography never stands still and those countries that were at the head of demographic change in the second half of the 20th century now find themselves facing the new challenges of very low fertility and very rapid ageing of their populations. The articles in this issue address the past, the present and the future of demography in Asian countries and assess the causes and consequences of this spectacular transition.
About this issue In this issue we address one of the most important concerns in Asia: security over natural resources or about how to ensure we have sufficient food, water, energy, and other resources at an accessible cost and within tolerable levels of risk now and into the future. Managing resource risks in an insecure world will differ by country, the type and possible magnitude of the risks, and national, regional vulnerabilities.
Nevertheless, the multidimensional nature of resource security demands that critically important natural capital stocks be conserved at a regional and global level and that special consideration be given to the particular vulnerabilities of poor countries while following market-based approaches to ensure adequate resource supplies. Whatever the national approach adopted towards resource security, we stress that promoting resource security is not a zero-sum game.
All countries can benefit from a multilateral and a sustainable market framework that provides incentives for producers and delivers reliable supply to consumers. About this issue By the end of the s, Japan had caught up in technology, productivity and living standards to the advanced economies of the West. In this issue of EAFQ, those areas that are in urgent need of change are set out alongside stories about, and in the context of, what Japan has done right and where Japan continues to lead. About this issue In the past half decade Chinese foreign direct investment has become a major element of global capital flows.
Chinese investment abroad represents a new dimension of China's integration into global economic and political systems. The upward trend is clear. As China relaxes restrictions on outbound capital flows, an increasing share of the country's foreign asset holdings will likely shift from official holdings of foreign exchange reserves to direct investment abroad by Chinese companies. This issue of EAFQ assembles perspectives from top analysts to review the issue.
It provides a start in serious and objective analysis of how we should properly look at the growth and reception of Chinese direct investment on the international stage. About this issue India is a paradox. This middle class, however loosely defined, displays an insatiable appetite for consumer goods, thereby realising its hope of participating in the global economy as its most enthusiastic entrant. On the other hand, about a third of the population still lives below the poverty line. Suggestions that the adventurous Indian middle class will act as an engine propelling the country on to the world stage downplay the enormous challenges that lie ahead.
About this issue In late Thais are cleaning up after devastating floods, caused by above-normal rains in the north of the country. More than people have died, millions of hectares of farmland have been inundated, 20, factories and plants have been damaged, some never to reopen, leaving at least 1. Accusations of incompetence and corruption in the management of the floodwaters and the allocation of relief funds dominate the media and the Parliament. Beneath the temporary gloom, there is good news.
For the first time since September , when a military coup deposed the government of Thaksin Shinawatra, the country has a leadership whose legal and electoral legitimacy is acknowledged by almost all Thais. The contributors to this issue set the scene for thinking about the challenges ahead. The road ahead remains uncertain. What is certain is that it will not be smooth.
About this issue There are great expectations of Asia, not only as an engine of global growth but also of its leadership at a time of global economic fragility. The new global order, centred on the G20, includes six Asian powers and provides a platform for Asian leadership. And do the institutional structures and arrangements within Asia provide the foundations that are needed to build coherent policy strategies to deal with the economic problems the world now faces?
The essays in this volume address these questions. It is not yet clear how trans-Pacific regional institutions should relate to East Asian regional institutions or how regional institutions should relate to the G20 process. An increasingly prominent interest is how regional institutions can accommodate dialogues on political and security concerns as well as economic matters as changes in the structure of regional economic power lead inexorably to shifts in regional political power.
The expansion of the East Asia summit to include the us and Russia begins to address this interest, but it is only a first step. Will it meet the test? The verdict is out and far from certain.