The 2022 edition of the Economic and Social Survey of Asia and the Pacific 2022, the flagship publication of ESCAP, was launched recently at the UNESCAP headquarters in Bangkok, on Tuesday, 12 April 2022. The Survey 2022 discusses at length how the rapid development of Asia-Pacific economies over the past few decades has lifted millions out of poverty but the high economic growth has masked key social issues, particularly inequality, and the global financial crisis and COVID-19 pandemic have forced such issues into the mainstream. This 75th issue of the Survey released during the auspicious occasion of ESCAP's 75th anniversary, suggests Asia-Pacific economies must prioritise inclusive growth – whereby citizens of all socio-economic groups are able to improve their livelihoods, incomes, health and education levels. An important opportunity to shift the paradigm that was missed in 2009, so it is vital that Asia-Pacific economies make full use of this post-COVID-19 rebuilding process.
The strong recovery that was made in the first half of 2021 was curtailed largely by the impact of the virus’ Delta variant. Recovery is thus difficult not only due to the unequal devastation of the pandemic, but also because of constrained fiscal and monetary policy spaces faced by economies in the region. However, a robust and inclusive recovery is very much possible, and this is where the Survey 2022 hopes to provide useful insights.
The Policy Dialogue will provide a forum for discussion of the key messages of the 2022 Survey especially relating to the major challenges including those created by COVID-19 that South Asia is facing and policy options to address them. The Dialogue will take the form of an interactive discussion following an introductory presentation followed by remarks by eminent panelists and open discussion with participants.
The Policy Dialogue will be held in a hybrid mode.