Asia to show more balanced growth
By Kim Tae-jong
A chief economist of the Allianz Group forecast Tuesday that the Asian economy will show more moderate but balanced growth in the coming years.
“This year we expect the average annual growth rate in real GDP to slow only marginally to 7.2 percent,” Michael Heise said during a news conference at the Westin Chosun Seoul. “Looking further ahead, Asian emerging markets are likely to keep delivering growth on this scale beyond 2013.”
The conference was part of his five-day tour of Asian countries where the group’s subsidiaries are in business to present a new study on the economic outlook.
As a chief economist at the world’s leading financial corporation, he now advises the board of Allianz SE on economic and strategic issues. Before joining the group, Heise was secretary general of the German Council of Economic Experts, chief economist of DG Bank and chief economist and head of research at DZ Bank.
During the conference, he also noted that there will be a moderate economic upswing in Asia this year.
“First of all, we assume that global trade will start to pick up at least some speed over the next few months. Second, a return to a more expansionary economic policy in many of Asia's emerging economies should help to stimulate the economy,” he said.
He added that with inflationary pressure waning, various central banks have been able to loosen the monetary policy reins in recent months, citing China, where signs of a recovery in the lending segment are already starting to emerge.
According to his study, Asian emerging markets showed a more subdued performance last year, which is attributable to weaker global trade growth, which came in at only 5.6 percent compared with growth bordering on 15 percent in 2010.
The veteran economist said subdued growth in industrialized countries is now having a direct impact on Asia's economic prospects, which will help reform the Asian economy.
“The protracted soft patch in advanced economies over the coming years will act as a catalyst for a long overdue economic reform process in Asia. A stronger focus on the domestic economy should create a more balanced, sustainable foundation for growth in emerging Asia in the long run,” he said.