Social impact of globalisation in Southeast Asia

Social impact of globalisation in Southeast Asia

Comparative experience of globalisation in Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and the Philippines

The paper focuses on four Southeast Asian economies, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and the Philippines. It looks at the underlying factors explaining the variance between the experience of these countries. The factors considered are initial conditions, policies, institutions, and investments in human and physical capital.

The paper:

  • looks at the record of social development in Southeast Asia with regard to poverty and inequality in the last two decades
  • reviews the process of globalisation that these countries have gone through in that period
  • analyses the link between globalisation and the social impact, including the underlying factors explaining variance in outcomes between countries and between periods of different development strategies or level of development
  • discusses the way forward for national and international policies and institutions to ensure that globalisation will proceed with the least negative social impact

The author argues for

  • a package of Government policies that are needed to ensure equitable growth. and promote efficient development of the agriculture and rural sector which is driven by the private sector, especially in creating off farm rural employment. For example, provision of rural infrastructure and linking urban and rural areas better are more important than subsidised credit or inputs
  • Better targetting of policies on the poor
  • promoting opportunity through investment in physical infrastructure, human capital and sustainable use of natural resources
  • people must be made to feel secure, primarily by reducing the volatility and potential for economic shock, but also (in the longer term) through more formal social safety nets

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