chapter  5
27 Pages

The Asian crisis and macroeconomic development: The impact of ambiguity

ByWILLY SPANJERS

When casually contemplating the intricacies of improving the standard of living in developing and emerging economies, the terms ‘growth’, ‘uncertainty’ and ‘crisis’ are among the first that come to mind. To improve standards of living, economic growth is a necessity. The outcomes of the policies devised for achieving growth are subject to all kinds of uncertainties. And if things fail to work out as planned, one may end up with a full-blown economic crisis. A particularly powerful combination of growth, uncertainty and crisis has been provided by East Asia. After a prolonged period of extraordinarily high growth, in 1997 a sudden and unexpected bout of uncertainty led to the reversal of international financial flows and caused an unprecedented crisis.