ADB trims Southeast Asia 2014 growth forecast to 4.6 percent


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An evening view of downtown Ho Chi Minh City. An evening view of downtown Ho Chi Minh City.
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has trimmed its growth forecast for Southeast Asia this year, citing factors such as political turmoil in Thailand earlier in the year and weaker commodity export prices in Indonesia.
In its update to the 2014 outlook, ADB said on Thursday that Southeast Asia was now expected to grow 4.6 percent this year, down slightly from its forecast in July of 4.7 percent and 5.0 percent forecast in April.
The ADB trimmed its 2014 growth forecasts for Indonesia, Thailand, the Philippines, Vietnam and Singapore compared with April, but raised its growth forecast for Malaysia to 5.7 percent from 5.1 percent, citing a rebound in the country's exports.
The ADB said growth in Southeast Asia was likely to accelerate in 2015 to 5.3 percent, although that was down from its July and April forecasts for 5.4 percent growth.
"Next year, better performance in the major industrial economies and Thailand's recovery from its slump will spur Southeast Asian growth to 5.3 percent," it said.
The ADB kept its 2014 and 2015 growth forecasts for China unchanged, saying growth was likely to slip to 7.5 percent this year and 7.4 percent next year, compared with 7.7 percent in 2013.
"A shrinking workforce and a sluggish property sector will tamp down growth... but economic stimulus and rising external and internal demand are expected to contain the impact," it said, referring to China.
The ADB kept its 2014 growth forecast for India unchanged at 5.5 percent.
It also maintained its upgraded 2015 growth forecast for India of 6.3 percent unveiled in July, up from its April forecast of 6.0 percent growth, citing expectations of economic reform by Prime Minister Narendra Modi's new government.

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