Asean can gain from shift in China’s changing demographic

Asean can gain from shift in China’s changing demographic

CHONGQING - ASEAN nations can seize the benefit from the economic effects of China’s changing demographic, which is moving towards an older, ageing population.

Indonesia’s former Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy Dr Mari Elka Pangestu pointed out that this phenomenon presented an opportunity for South-East Asia.

“The rising labour costs and the reduction in a young labour force is a chance for South-East Asia as there will be shifts in the production network,” she said.

Dr Elka was a panellist at a World China Economic Forum (WCEF) session themed “China’s Role in the World and Regional Economy – Prospects and Opportunities in a New China Century” yesterday.

She believed there would be a greater link in the global value chain network between South-East Asia and China.

“From a South-East Asian perspective, China’s lower growth rate has a great impact on our economies right now,” said Dr Elka.

“A peaceful rise of China and ASEAN based on a win-win philosophy of shared prosperity was essential for progress.”

“When participating in infrastructure projects, China needs to look at local components and partners in ASEAN countries.

“Closer engagement with ASEAN is needed,” said Dr Elka, who served as Indonesia’s Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy from 2011 until Oct this year.

Another panellist, K.K. Sharma, the first director-general and head of merger of Control of Functional Co­m­­petition Commission of India, said cooperation was essential for ASEAN, China and India to survive in the 21st century.

China Development Institute executive vice-president Guo Wanda cautioned that China’s economic growth of around 7 per cent will continue to slow down with the possibility of hitting 4 per cent in the future.

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