Facts: Asia's Economy  

Facts: Asia's Economy

Asia, the largest and most populous continent in the world, has undergone an economic revolution in the last decades. Today, the continent has the follows Europe with the second largest nominal GDP, yet has the largest when measured in purchasing power parity.
  • China, Japan, India, South Korea and Indonesia are Asia's largest economies -as in 2011.
  • Singapore has one of the busiest ports in the world and is the world's fourth largest foreign exchange trading centre.
  • Asia suffered a financial crisis in 1997 when the Thai baht collapsed after the Thai government was forced to float the currency owing to a lock of foreign currency to support its fixed exchange rate. At the time, Thailand had acquired a burden of foreign debt that made the country effectively bankrupt. The devaluation of the Thai baht was followed by currency crises or financial instability in Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Korea, Estonia, Russia, Brazil, Australia and New Zealand. Commodity producers around the world suffered and it raised fears of an economic meltdown at an international level due to financial contagion. As the crisis spread, most of Southeast Asia and Japan saw collapsing currencies, devalued stock markets and other asset prices, and a precipitous rise in private debt. This happened in the context of Asia's high debt economic model. Indonesia, South Korea and Thailand were the ones most affected, followed by Hong Kong, Malaysia, Laos and Philippines, while China, Taiwan, Singapore, Brunei and Vietnam were less affected. However, all suffered from a loss of demand and trust in the region.
  • According to Global Office Locations 2011, Asia dominated the office locations with 4 of top 5 in Asia (Hong Kong, Singapore, Tokyo, London and Shanghai). Around 68% of international firms have office in Hong Kong.
  • In the late 1990s and early 200s, the economies of the PRC and India have been growing rapidly, both with an average annual growth rate of more than 8%. Other recent high growth nations in Asia comprise Malaysia, Indonesia, Pakistan, Thailand, Vietnam, Mongolia, Uzbekistan and the Philippines.

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