The World Bank on 16 April 2017 released a report entitled Globaliztion Backlash. The report observed that despite possible protectionism, South Asia has an opportunity to increase exports and create jobs.
The report also confirms that South Asia remains the fastest-growing region in the world, gradually widening its lead relative to East Asia.
Highlights of Globalization Backlash
• With a strong performance in the eastern part of the South Asia Region – in particular in Bhutan, Bangladesh and India – the region defied disappointing world growth in 2016.
• Inflation slowed down in the second half of 2016, mainly due to lower food prices, but appears to be turning up again.
• Despite recent real exchange rate appreciation, current account balances are mostly in order throughout the region.
• After a sharp decline triggered by lower oil prices, remittance inflows are stabilizing in most countries and international reserves are mostly at comfortable levels.
• Progress on fiscal consolidation has been more gradual and public debt levels remain high.
• India’s economic momentum is expected to pick up speed from 6.8 percent in 2016 to 7.2 percent by 2018 after a modest setback due to weaker than expected investments and the effects of the withdrawal of large denomination bank notes.
• Timely and smooth implementation of the GST could prove to a significant benefit to economic activity However, India faces the challenge of further accelerating the responsiveness of poverty reduction in growth.