28 October, 2020

The Drone Across Asia

Global recession spawns a lot of talk but, alas, no wisdom

Illustration By Sorit
The Drone Across Asia
The Asian Development Bank's annual meeting is a mammoth event, where the bank's officials congregate with central bank chiefs, ministers and economists from all over the world to discuss economic policy. The one distinct feature of this year's meet, held in Bali, Indonesia, in May, was the obsession with the financial crisis. No matter what the topic of the session, the discussion seemed to veer around to what will happen to global finance and what we should do to stem the deepening recession.

This is understandable. By some estimates, the total loss incurred by the global banking sector is over $4 trillion, inter-bank lending is sluggish and all this is affecting the real economy. Incomes are declining in virtually all industrialised nations. Unemployment in the United States is at a record high, and all over the world, India included, unemployment is on the rise.

What is alarming is how little we understand about this phenomenon. This was nowhere more evident than in the high-powered Governors' Seminar at the Bali conference. The...


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