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Asia's Journey to Prosperity: Policy, Market, and Technology over 50 Years

Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies (BIDS) organized a seminar titled “Asia's Journey to Prosperity: Policy, Market, and Technology over 50 Years’’ on 13 March 2023 in the BIDS Conference Room, Dhaka. Dr. Yasuyuki Sawada, Professor of Economics at the University of Tokyo and former Chief Economist at the Asian Development Bank (ADB), delivered the lecture. The event was held in Hybrid mode. 

Data from 1990 onwards would reveal income inequality in China and Indonesia, while the inequality in India increased, according to Dr. Sawada. According to him, the ADB book mostly used statistics from 1960 to 1980 to describe Asia's economic success. The success of Asia, as described in the 500-page book, was mainly due to factors such as: relying on proactive state support; promoting structural transformation; investing in productive capacity; building human capital; accelerating technological progress; opening trade and investment; maintaining macroeconomic stability; promoting social inclusivity; and encouraging regional cooperation and integration. In his speech, Dr. Sawada also mentioned difficulties facing Asian nations due to shifting political and economic conditions, ongoing US interest rate increases, and fluctuating gasoline prices caused by the conflict in Ukraine. According to him, for many Asian countries to advance, they must implement a universal pension plan, a public health care system, high standards in education, develop their capital markets, and take steps to mitigate the effects of climate change. He stressed not just infrastructure development but social and inclusive growth as well.

Dr. Binayak Sen, the Director General of BIDS, chaired this seminar. This event was attended by BIDS researchers, development practitioners, policymakers, academicians, journalists, and representatives from civil society.

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