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Economics, Finance sector development

Should emerging Asia worry about a “taper tantrum” post-COVID-19?

Should emerging Asia worry about a “taper tantrum” post-COVID-19?

With an improved growth outlook in the United States (US) in the second half of 2021 as the economy recovers from the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in part related to the substantial fiscal stimulus in the US introduced at the start of 2021, the Federal Reserve (Fed) is on course to slow down its asset purchases program, or so-called quantitative easing (QE) tapering. This has sparked fears of sharp capital outflows from emerging market economies (EMEs) and currency depreciations, as occurred during the “taper tantrum” episode of May 2013. At that time, emerging markets reacted abruptly to the announcement by the Fed that it may wind down its quantitative easing program, signalling tighter monetary policy (Sahay et al.

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Economics, Finance sector development

Foreign holdings of local currency bonds: A double-edged sword for emerging Asia

Foreign holdings of local currency bonds: A double-edged sword for emerging Asia
Local currency bond markets (LCBMs) have continued to develop in emerging Asian economies since the early 2000s, with foreign investor participation rising markedly since the global financial crisis of 2007–2008. LCBMs help to enhance domestic financial stability by enabling governments and companies to borrow in domestic currency.

Climate change, Energy, Finance sector development

Green bonds show promise for financing energy-efficient buildings in Southeast Asia

Green bonds show promise for financing energy-efficient buildings in Southeast Asia
The member countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) have been experiencing a surge in energy demand due to their growing populations, expanding economies, and rising living standards. One reason for this rising energy demand is increased activity in the building and construction sector.

Economics, Finance sector development, Health, Social development and protection

Remittance inflows giving resilience to Bangladesh’s rural economy amid COVID-19

Remittance inflows giving resilience to Bangladesh’s rural economy amid COVID-19
While the World Bank has identified Bangladesh as one of only three big economies that had increases in remittance inflows in 2020, along with Pakistan and Mexico (Ratha et al. 2020), and remittances have long made up a substantial share of people’s income in the country, preliminary results from a recent study supported by the Asian Development Bank Institute (ADBI) finds surprising resilience for remittance inflows into the rural economy during the first wave of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic in Bangladesh.

Climate change, Finance sector development

Which financing sources matter for private investment in renewable energy in Asia?

Which financing sources matter for private investment in renewable energy in Asia?
The mobilization of climate finance is critical for limiting global warming to within 1.5°C and preventing catastrophic climate change (IPCC 2018). Annual green investments totaling $1.5 trillion are needed (United Nations 2017). Despite the falling cost of renewable energy technologies, energy investments remain dominated by investments in fossil fuels. In Asia and the Pacific, annual investments fell after 2017 and until 2020 remained below the 2017 level.

Climate change, Finance sector development

ESG investment for promoting net-zero carbon emissions

ESG investment for promoting net-zero carbon emissions
ESG investment aims to encourage companies to consider environment (E), social (S), and corporate governance (G) issues by raising their long-term corporate value. It is becoming indispensable for filling the funding shortfalls needed to achieve the Paris Agreement’s goal of limiting the global temperature increase this century to well below 2 degrees Celsius above preindustrial levels, and desirably within 1.5 degrees Celsius, as well as to encourage the transformation of corporate behavior toward net-zero emissions.

Economics, Finance sector development Climate change, Finance sector development

Revisiting green bond market development in Viet Nam

Revisiting green bond market development in Viet Nam
Green bonds (GBs) are being used around the world as a financial tool for raising capital for projects that can benefit the environment (World Bank 2019). The money raised by GB issuances can fund investment in programs that enhance adaptation and mitigate the effects of climate change, such as projects for clean energy, public transport, and clean water. The GB concept was proposed by the World Bank in its Strategic Framework on Development and Climate Change in 2008 to help countries around the world raise capital for strategies for solving the problems of air pollution and global climate change (Trang 2015).

Economics, Finance sector development

Achieving resilient emerging market economies amid the macroeconomic challenges of the 21st century

Achieving resilient emerging market economies amid the macroeconomic challenges of the 21st century
Emerging market economies have faced a host of challenges in the post-global financial crisis (GFC) environment. The GFC environment was shaped by the confluence of four key developments. The first was financial globalization and de-regulation, processes that started in the late 1970s in Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries. These later spread to emerging markets in the 1990s and 2000s and transformed the global financial system into a complex cobweb of global networks, exposing countries to financial shocks transmitted by volatile bursts of capital inflows and outflows of “hot money.”

Economics, Finance sector development, Information and Communications Technology

Fintech development transforming the financial landscape in the People’s Republic of China

Fintech development transforming the financial landscape in the People’s Republic of China
Financial technology (fintech) is rapidly changing the financial landscape in the People’s Republic of China (PRC), with important implications for financial inclusion and macroeconomic stability (Huang 2020). Fintech in the PRC started at the end of 2004 when the mobile payment service Alipay first came online. However, fintech did not grow dramatically until 2013, when the online money market fund Yu’ebao started to receive investments from Alipay users.