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Emerging Markets Slow Down
The Boao Forum for Asia confirms a decrease in growth for the region, but China continues to be a global growth engine
By Deng Yaqing | Web Exclusive

Three reports on economic integration, emerging markets as represented by the E-11, and the ranking of the competitiveness of Asian economies were released at a press conference on March 22 when the 2016 Annual Conference of the Boao Forum for Asia (BFA) opened. About 2,100 representatives from 62 countries and regions participated in the forum.

E11 refers to 11 emerging economies in the G20, and is composed of Argentina, Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, South Korea, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, and Turkey.

Yao Zhizhong, Deputy Director of the Institute of World Economy and Politics at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences said that the E11 all have four things in common. They are all going through an economic slowdown, the bleak bulk commodities market has cast a shadow over their economies, their foreign trade is sluggish, and lastly, their financial vulnerability can't be ignored.

Lin Guijun, Vice President of the University of International Business and Economics noted that trade in Asia has weakened, and that growth in trade is now slower than its GDP growth.

"From the eruption of the global financial crisis in 2008 to 2012, the growth of trade in Asia decelerated to 3.6 percent, with GDP growth standing at 6.4 percent. In 2014, the pace further slowed down to 1.5 percent, with GDP growth standing at 4.1 percent," said Lin.

"However, Asian economies, especially China and India, will continue to be global growth engines--China and India alone contribute more than 40 percent to global growth," Yao told Beijing Review at the sidelines of the press conference.

According to this year's report ranking the competitiveness of Asian economies, China maintained its position in the ninth place for three years in a row.

"Despite the current slowdown, China keeps a mid- and high-growth pace, and its inflation rate is mild. Besides that, a new round of opening up and reform is improving the development environment for companies, and the country is experiencing a transformation into an innovation-driven economy with growing investment into research and development," said Wang Jun, an expert from China Center for International Economic Exchanges.

(Reporting from Boao, Hainan)

Copyedited by Bryan Michael Galvan

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