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World Economic Situation and Prospects 2019

Published on Thursday, January 31, 2019
World Economic Situation and Prospects 2019


  • The report is jointly given by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN/DESA), United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and five United Nations Regional Commissions. The report is given annually.

Key Findings

  • The report predicts that the global economy will grow by 3% in 2019 and 2020, but suggests there are signs that growth has peaked.
  • Highlights uneven progress among countries with anticipated declines in Central, Southern and West Africa, Western Asia and Latin America and the Caribbean and rural areas being left behind urban areas.
  • Though economic prospects at the global level have improved over the past two years, several large developing countries have seen per capita income decline.
  • More than half of the population has no access to social protection, perpetuating high levels of subsistence activities.
  • Developed countries grew at 2.2% in 2017 and 2018 and experienced declining unemployment rates.
  • East Asia grew at 5.8% while South Asia at 5.6% in 2018.
  • The report raises concerns over the sustainability of global economic growth in the face of rising financial, social and environmental challenges.
  • It identifies rising inequalities, conflict and climate change as key challenges to achieving SDGs.
  • For poverty reduction, the report observes dramatic shifts will be needed in countries where poverty rates remain high, including steep reductions in income inequality and accelerations in economic growth.
  • The report calls for improving the quality of education and broadening access to education to address high levels of inequality and support progress on SDGs.
  • On climate change, the report calls for integrating the negative climate risks associated from the emissions through carbon pricing, energy efficiency regulations and reduction of fossil fuel subsidies.

Findings Regarding South Asia

  • South Asia’s outlook remains moderately favourable, but economic trends are highly divergent across countries
  • The downside risks have increased in several economies in the short-term
  • The region needs to strengthen productive capacities and international competitiveness to unleash its growth potential in the medium-term
  • The Indian economy is expected to expand by 7.6 and 7.4 per cent in 2019 and 2020, respectively, after expanding by 7.4 per cent in 2018.
  • Economic growth continues to be underpinned by robust private consumption, a more expansionary fiscal stance and benefits from previous reforms.

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