When the world gets closer.

We help you see farther.

Sign up to our expressly international daily newsletter.

Economy

World Bank Lowers Growth Outlook For China

THE WORLD BANK, REUTERS

Worldcrunch

SINGAPORE - The World Bank cut its 2012 growth forecast for East Asia and the Pacific region on Monday, with China’s GDP growth outlook down from 9.3% in 2011 to 7.7% this year.

Markets reacted quickly to the news:

Oil and gold prices push sharply lower as World Bank cuts China growth forecast on.mktw.net/SMYxG3

— MarketWatch (@MarketWatch) October 8, 2012

Economic growth in the East Asia and Pacific region may slow down from 8.2% in 2011 to 7.2% this year, before recovering to 7.6% in 2013, according to the East Asia and Pacific Economic Data Monitor. The report only takes into account East Asia’s developing countries, but not richer Asian countries such as Japan, Singapore or South Korea.

"The East Asia and Pacific region’s share in the global economy has tripled in the last two decades, from 6% to almost 18% today, which underscores the critical importance of this region’s continued growth for the rest of the world,” said World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim.

“Weaker demand for East Asia’s exports is slowing the regional economy, but compared to other parts of the world, it’s still growing strongly, and thriving domestic demand will enable the region’s economy to bounce back to 7.6% next year,” said Pamela Cox, World Bank East Asia and Pacific Regional Vice President.

Poverty in East Asia and Pacific will continue to decline in 2013, according to new report. bit.ly/VCFyoj via @worldbankasia

— World Bank (@WorldBank) October 8, 2012

“Even under difficult global circumstances, poverty in the region will continue to decline, with the share of people living on $2 a day expected to reach 24.5% by the end of 2013, down from 28.8% in 2010,” said Pamela Cox.

The World Bank also cut China’s GDP growth outlook from 9.3% in 2011 to 7.7% this year, because of weak exports and lower investment growth. It expects however China’s growth to rebound to 8.1% in 2013, as stimulus measures kick and global trade improves.

China’s slowdown this year has been significant, and some fear it could still accelerate, stated the report.

"Unlike the rest of the region, China is experiencing a double whammy -- the growth slowdown is driven by weaker exports as well as domestic demand, in particular investment growth," World Bank Chief Economist for East Asia and the Pacific Bert Hofman said at a briefing in Singapore.

The international lender also warned that if the euro zone deteriorated further, this could affect East Asia’s developing economies, mainly through trade and financial market disruptions. Another risk to the region’s outlook is the “fiscal cliff” risk in the United States.

You've reached your limit of free articles.

To read the full story, start your free trial today.

Get unlimited access. Cancel anytime.

Exclusive coverage from the world's top sources, in English for the first time.

Insights from the widest range of perspectives, languages and countries.

Society

What's Spoiling The Kids: The Big Tech v. Bad Parenting Debate

Without an extended family network, modern parents have sought to raise happy kids in a "hostile" world. It's a tall order, when youngsters absorb the fears (and devices) around them like a sponge.

Image of a kid wearing a blue striped sweater, using an ipad.

Children exposed to technology at a very young age are prominent today.

Julián de Zubiría Samper

-Analysis-

BOGOTÁ — A 2021 report from the United States (the Youth Risk Behavior Survey) found that 42% of the country's high-school students persistently felt sad and 22% had thought about suicide. In other words, almost half of the country's young people are living in despair and a fifth of them have thought about killing themselves.

Such chilling figures are unprecedented in history. Many have suggested that this might be the result of the COVID-19 pandemic, but sadly, we can see depression has deeper causes, and the pandemic merely illustrated its complexity.

I have written before on possible links between severe depression and the time young people spend on social media. But this is just one aspect of the problem. Today, young people suffer frequent and intense emotional crises, and not just for all the hours spent staring at a screen. Another, possibly more important cause may lie in changes to the family composition and authority patterns at home.

Firstly: Families today have fewer members, who communicate less among themselves.

Young people marry at a later age, have fewer children and many opt for personal projects and pets instead of having children. Families are more diverse and flexible. In many countries, the number of children per woman is close to or less than one (Singapore, Taiwan, South Korea, Hong Kong among others).

In Colombia, women have on average 1.9 children, compared to 7.6 in 1970. Worldwide, women aged 15 to 49 years have on average 2.4 children, or half the average figure for 1970. The changes are much more pronounced in cities and among middle and upper-income groups.

Of further concern today is the decline in communication time at home, notably between parents and children. This is difficult to quantify, but reasons may include fewer household members, pervasive use of screens, mothers going to work, microwave ovens that have eliminated family cooking and meals and, thanks to new technologies, an increase in time spent on work, even at home. Our society is addicted to work and devotes little time to minors.

Keep reading...Show less

You've reached your limit of free articles.

To read the full story, start your free trial today.

Get unlimited access. Cancel anytime.

Exclusive coverage from the world's top sources, in English for the first time.

Insights from the widest range of perspectives, languages and countries.

The latest