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Asian economies will continue to expand rapidly in the next two years on the back of foreign investments, exports and domestic demand, but will not be free of worries, according to a recent securities company economic report. Massive infrastructure spending, the benefits of past investments and deregulation and growing regional trade will push along regional growth.
The report tipped China’s gross domestic product to grow by 9.5 per cent in 1996 and 10.5 per cent in 1997, and Hong Kong’s to grow by 4.3 and 5.0 per cent. Singapore’s real GDP was forecast to grow by 7.6 and 7.4 per cent, Malaysia’s by 8.6 and 8.1 per cent, Thailand’s by 8.8 and 8.4 per cent, Indonesia’s by 7.3 and 7.1 per cent and Philippines’ by 5.6 and 5.8 per cent.
“However, all is not rosy,” cautioned the report, which listed overheating as the region’s biggest challenge in the short term and skilled-labor shortages in the long run.
It cited strains from rapid growth that had begun to stretch current account deficits and spur inflation in some regional economies, which could prevent their central banks from lowering interest rates.
“This implies that economic vulnerability to unexpected shocks will remain high,” the report said, forecasting a further tightening of monetary policy in countries such as the Philippines and Malaysia, and no significant easing in Thailand, Indonesia and China.
Crosby Securities also cited massive new investment programs generated by demands on infrastructure such as power, telecommunications and transport which had fuelled over-heating.
It said Asia would also face a bigger challenge from newly deregulating economies in Eastern Europe which offered lower costs and better-educated workers to foreign investors.
Asia’s main foreign investors should, however, continue to expand their presence in the region, the securities house said, noting new trends of intra-Asian investment.
Singapore is shifting its lower value-added disc drive and electronics industry to Malaysia, which in turn is moving some of its garment-making and consumer electronics manufacturing to Indonesia and Thailand. Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore are increasingly investing in Viet Nam, Myanmar and Laos.
“Asia will benefit from this trend in several ways,” the report said.
( )1Asia economy will continue to grow because of _____________.
A. foreign investment B. demands in Asian countries.
C. export D. all of the above
( )2 In the next 2 years, the highest economic growth will appear in ____________.
A. Singapore B. Thailand
C. Hong Kong D. China
( )3 Years later, the problem in Asian economy may be _________________.
A. too little investment B. too much investment
C. not enough qualified labors D. monetary instability
( )4 According to this report, economic changes in East Europe are ___________.
A. harmful B. challenging
C. helpful D. useless
( )5 The report is about the prospect of Asian economy.
A. optimistic B. pessimistic
C. more optimistic than pessimistic D. more pessimistic than optimistic