The Economic Outlook for Southeast Asia…

Economic forecasting is a mug’s game. But here are a few generalizations about issues likely to impact Asian in the coming year. The year 2016 begins not with a bang but with a whimper, to misquote the poet Eliot. It marks the end of two trends without signalling the beginning of a new one. For Asia as a whole this promises to be another dull but not disastrous year. It is one which also sees the formal beginning of the ASEAN Economic Community, a nice idea which faces challenges both from economic nationalism in the larger member countries and competition between China and the US overshadowing the multilateralism of the World Trade Organization.

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