Economic and Social Survey of Asia and the Pacific

2412-0979 (online)
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The Economic and Social Survey of Asia and the Pacific monitors regional progress, provides cutting-edge analyses and guides policy discussion on the current and emerging socio-economic issues and policy challenges to support inclusive and sustainable development in the region. Since 1957, the Survey has also contained a study or studies focusing on a significant aspect or challenge relevant to the economies of Asia and the Pacific region.
Economic and Social Survey of Asia and the Far East 1968

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31 Dec 1968
9789210601924 (PDF)

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This latest edition of the Survey analyzes current economic and social developments in the region against the background of events in the world economy. It also focuses on the serios problems of growth and transformation of the area's least developed and Pacific Island developing economies.

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  • Introduction

    The national products of the developing countries of Asia, counted in real terms and without regard to changing terms of trade, showed in 1968 a wider incidence of robust growth than in the preceding year. In seven out of eight countries for which estimates are available, national product increased by more than 5 per cent. A grand regional average would yield a lower figure than in the previous year (5 per cent instead of 8) since India’s national income was recovering in 1967 from a series of exceptionally bad harvests and its growth in the more normal circumstances of 1968 was again at a low level. Such an average is relevant to the tentative measurement of the potential welfare of the average citizen of Asia. But economic affairs are arranged within states and if averages are to throw light on opportunities and their exploitation they should be formed on principles that reflect these.

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  • Expand / Collapse Hide / Show all Abstracts Economic problems of export-dependent countries

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    • The evolution of export dependence and its changing problems

      The developing countries of Asia differ greatly in the form and extent of their dependence on exports.

    • Trends and policies

      The three major export crops of tea, rubber and coconut are completely owned and operated by the private sector. Direct involvement by the public sector in marketing and export is also insignificant except in the export to mainland China of the bulk of sheet rubber produced, which is purchased at market prices and often at a premium.

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  • Expand / Collapse Hide / Show all Abstracts The Implications of economic controls and of liberalization

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    • The Implications of economic controls and of liberalization: Introduction

      The evolution of the techniques and the directions of economic development in Asian countries and the evolution of their systems of economic controls have during the past ten years vied with each other for the most prominent place in policy discussion. In principle, the two sets of policies should be integrated in some sort of hierarchic order of objectives, strategies and instruments. In practice, this integration is one of the most difficult feats to achieve by economic decision and administration. The difficulty has many well-known causes. Information about the behaviour of the economy is at a low level everywhere and can improve only slowly with the acquisition of new techniques of analysis and an increase in qualified personnel. Development policy deals with a very large number of obstinately unknown factors and attempts to implement it tend to bring into the open sharp conflicts of interest. External assistance is, by definition, a factor external to the economy. Short run problems of economic management must be solved in the immediate present and typically pre-empt the services of such economic controls as exist, or lead to the establishment of new ones. The frequent inconsistencies between development policies and economic controls are in fact the most concrete instances of inconsistency between long run objectives and short-run policies, between two sets of objectives, two sets of routines and often two different sets of people in different branches of the administration. The mutual adaptation of the two kinds of policies requires a continuous struggle with hard realities, and success in this field appears to depend as much on the skilful and diplomatic work of individual civil servants and ministers as on well thought out schemes. The harmonization of policy being thus very imperfect, it is only to be expected that changes in development policy or in the system of economic controls occur separately and in spurts which force one or the other aspect of policy into the foreground.

    • Control and liberalization in India

      The present chapter attempts an analysis of the impact of the system of economic control in India and of its liberalization on serveral economic variables: the pattern of investment, the efficiency of production, the generation of larger exportable surpluses, the mobilization of savings, the pattern of income distribution and the correction of various short run imbalances between supply and demand in various sectors of the economy. The discussion is confined to the industrial sector of the economy. The impact of the controls on agricultural commodities requires separate treatment. The major instruments of policy which form the system of Indian economic controls, defining each by the area of its immediate impact, include.

    • Control and liberalization in Pakistan
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  • Expand / Collapse Hide / Show all Abstracts Current economic developments

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    • Broad features of development in 1968
    • Major recent and prospective problems of economic policy

      In reviewing development assistance in 1968, it is more than ever necessary to distinguish clearly between disbursements or utilization and commitments. Disbursements reflect past commitments as well as the utilization of funds committed in earlier periods which is determined by the capacity of administrations and economies to apply and absorb resources of very uneven utility. Only the sum of disbursements and the contents of the aid pipelines measure the available residue of past commitments. The year’s commitments are the minimum offer for the future. But while only a minimum, the trend of commitments is nevertheless an indication of the readiness of the developed countries as a group to release resources for development.

    • Economic development and economic policy: Report on the state of nine Asian developing economies in 1968

      After two years of very disappointing rates of growth, the real domestic product grew by over 4.4 per cent in 1967. This growth further accelerated during 1968 to 8.3 per cent.

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