nep-sea New Economics Papers
on South East Asia
Issue of 2023‒05‒15
fourteen papers chosen by
Kavita Iyengar
Asian Development Bank

  1. Analysis of the Fintech Landscape in the Philippines By Quimba, Francis Mark A.; Barral, Mark Anthony A.; Carlos, Jean Clarisse T.
  2. How does the knowledge accumulation process affect Vietnamese entrepreneurs’ success likelihood? By Nguyen, Minh-Hoang; Quang-Loc, Nguyen; Nguyen, Loan; Le, Tam-Tri; Phi, Xuan-Tuan; Vuong, Quan-Hoang
  3. E-Commerce in Asia: A Study of Its Economic Impact on the Region By Dayal Saraswat, Kinshuk
  4. T20 Indonesia 2022 Policy Brief: International Financing Framework To Bridge The Climate Financing Gap Between Developed And Developing Countries By Alvin Ulido Lumbanraja; Teuku Riefky
  5. Happiness in Old Age: The Daughter Connection By Sukontamarn, Pataporn; Asadullah, Niaz; Photphisutthiphong, Nopphawan; Nguyen, Yen Thi Hai
  6. Sovereign Debt Vulnerabilities in Asia and the Pacific By Ferrarini, Benno; Dagli, Suzette; Mariano, Paul
  7. Halal tourism in social science discipline: A literature review By Rahmat, Al Fauzi
  8. Credit Risk and Financial Performance of Commercial Banks: Evidence from Vietnam By Ha Nguyen
  9. Traceability, value, and trust in the coffee market: A natural experiment in Ethiopia By Ludovic Mbakop; Glenn Jenkins; Leonard Leung; Kamil Sertoglu
  10. The impact of e-commerce on Thai’s economy and its role plays in driving economic recovery after COVID-19 pandemic – the CGE Analysis. By Pinitjitsamut, Montchai; Thamthanakoon, Nithicha; Yaemklin, Sophon
  11. Top 25% Institutions and Economists in Viet Nam, as of March 2023 By RePEc, IDEAS
  12. Master Plan for Transport Connectivity: An Undertaking in Enhancing Regional Integration By Kshitiz Dahal
  13. Estimation of economic welfare gains from trade facilitation in the Andean Community By Glenn Jenkins; Mehmet Nazif
  14. Inclusive Growth, The Cordillera Corridor Tea Trade Treaty By Molintas, Dominique Trual

  1. By: Quimba, Francis Mark A.; Barral, Mark Anthony A.; Carlos, Jean Clarisse T.
    Abstract: Financial technology (fintech) in the Philippines has gained more attention in recent years, especially during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic when lockdowns were prevalent and cashless payments were encouraged. Thus, digital payments and engagements through various platforms have increased, resulting in more diversified financial products and services. Despite these developments, financial inclusion in the Philippines has lagged behind other Association of Southeast Asian Nations member-states. This paper analyzes the state of the fintech industry and investigates how the government can support the development of its ecosystem to ensure its contribution to the country’s development goals. It concludes that the Philippines has a strong fintech industry, as indicated by a growing number of fintechs (particularly in payments, lending, and banking technology verticals) and increasing capitalization. Finally, for the fintech industry to support the country’s financial inclusion goals, the availability of talent and credit for the sector must be improved.
    Keywords: business models;financial literacy;financial inclusion;e-money;fintech;FinTech ecosystem;lending
    Date: 2023
  2. By: Nguyen, Minh-Hoang; Quang-Loc, Nguyen; Nguyen, Loan; Le, Tam-Tri; Phi, Xuan-Tuan; Vuong, Quan-Hoang
    Abstract: The nationwide economic reform in 1986 transformed Vietnam from a centrally planned economy to a socialist-oriented market economy. Entrepreneurs and entrepreneurial spirits within the populace are suggested to fuel the structural changes. Despite the importance of entrepreneurship in Vietnam’s economy, studies in Vietnam mainly pay attention to the practical aspects of entrepreneurial activities and neglect the cognitive and theoretical aspects of entrepreneurship. Thus, the current study employs the information-processing perspective of the Mindsponge Theory to explore how entrepreneurs’ knowledge accumulation can affect their perceived likelihood of business success. Bayesian analysis indicates that business-related experience positively affects entrepreneurs’ business success likelihood. Greater willingness/readiness to transform thinking, acting, and beliefs can improve the business success of entrepreneurs who study others’ failures carefully. However, for entrepreneurs who perceive learning from others’ failures as unnecessary, higher willingness/readiness to transform diminishes their chance of success. Based on these findings, we recommend Vietnamese entrepreneurs accumulate knowledge through experience, learning, and an open mind for better decision-making and innovation creation capabilities. However, the learning process should be selective.
    Date: 2023–04–04
  3. By: Dayal Saraswat, Kinshuk
    Abstract: In Asia, e-commerce has the potential to generate considerable economic benefits due to the significant opportunities it offers. Recent years have seen a significant development in the global economy that has been referred to as e-commerce (electronic commerce). In order for the Asian countries to be able to take advantage of the opportunities presented by this global trend of growth, they will still have to make progress in areas such as connectivity, services, rules and regulations, as well as labour skills. As a result of government policy, the market can be assisted to maximize the benefits of the information revolution, and to mitigate the risk of potential market failure, as well as to facilitate market mechanisms that will facilitate the transition. E-commerce has the potential to play a significant role in the development of Asia and the Pacific as a whole. Over the last few years, the Asia Pacific region has grown at the fastest pace compared to any other region of the global business-to-consumer e-commerce market, making up the majority of the global e-commerce market in the business-to-consumer segment. It is expected that Asian and Pacific countries will have a 25% share of e-commerce in their Gross Domestic Product by the end of 2025, according to the World Bank. Among the many advantages of e-commerce for small and medium-sized businesses, one of the most notable is the ability to reach global markets and to compete at a global level.
    Keywords: global economy, intergovernmental cooperation, e-transactions, cybersecurity, big data analytics, the internet of things (IoT), artificial intelligence (AI), augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), and blockchain technology
    JEL: F43 L8 L81 O1
    Date: 2021–04–14
  4. By: Alvin Ulido Lumbanraja (Northwestern University – Kellogg School of Management); Teuku Riefky (Institute for Economic and Social Research, Faculty of Economics and Business, Universitas Indonesia (LPEM FEB UI))
    Abstract: To tackle climate change, countries need to channel more capital to green projects. Additionally, typical green projects tend to have a lower return and/or higher fixed costs relative to brown investment projects. This, along with the higher cost of capital and limited fiscal spaces, means that the state budget of developing countries will not be enough to fulfil the financing needs of climate-related projects. Furthermore, shallow domestic financial markets also limit the available domestic funds for green projects in developing countries. This policy brief proposes an actionable framework to promote the flow of private capital from developed countries into green projects in developing countries.
    Keywords: international finance — t20 — financing gap — private capital — developing countries — developed countries
    Date: 2022–03
  5. By: Sukontamarn, Pataporn (Chulalongkorn University); Asadullah, Niaz (Monash University); Photphisutthiphong, Nopphawan (Chulalongkorn University); Nguyen, Yen Thi Hai (Vienna Institute of Demography)
    Abstract: Family and intergenerational relationships are becoming increasingly important as sources of support and care for the elderly population in the rapidly aging Asian societies. However, this has also raised concern over the reinforcement of cultural preferences for sons as a source of old-age security. This paper, therefore, revisits the determinants of happiness in old age by investigating the role of adult children's gender in the context of Thailand, an aging Asian country with no legacy of sex preference in fertility. We employ nationally representative data to examine the association between old-age happiness and the presence of a coresiding child. Compared with living alone, living with at least one child is found to be positively associated with older persons' happiness. However, this result is specific to daughters. Moreover, compared with older men, older women systematically benefit from a "daughter effect." Coresiding daughters with a university education and those who maintain a good relationship with their parents help explain the positive happiness effect on older persons. Coresiding daughters are shown to increase the happiness of their parents through three channels: reducing loneliness, improving self-rated health, and improving the economic conditions of older parents. Overall, the findings of our study suggest a "daughter dividend, " or access to daughters, is key to enhancing parents' happiness in Thailand. Therefore, policies that increase the human capital of girl children and enhance family solidarity are likely to have long-term intergenerational wellbeing benefits.
    Keywords: older persons, aging, son preference, Southeast Asia, Thailand, subjective well-being
    JEL: D10 I31 J13 J14
    Date: 2023–04
  6. By: Ferrarini, Benno (Asian Development Bank); Dagli, Suzette (Asian Development Bank); Mariano, Paul (Asian Development Bank)
    Abstract: Three major global crises since 2008 have pushed up public and external debt ratios and associated risks across much of Asia and the Pacific. This is confirmed by debt ratio projections and evidence of widening pockets of vulnerability picked up by regional heat maps in this paper. By and large, the outlook is not yet suggestive of a widespread debt crisis looming in the region, and risks continue to be highest for economies that have long been struggling with unsustainably high debt because of structural and other challenges that well precede the recent pandemic and other crises. However, even for economies with a seemingly benign outlook, it is increasingly difficult to envisage just how more widespread fiscal pressure and debt distress could be averted indefinitely. A most challenging global environment is hampering growth while raising the cost of borrowing and need for fiscal spending. The premise for restoring public finances and ensuring their sustainability after the pandemic crisis was for exactly opposite conditions to prevail.
    Keywords: sovereign debt sustainability; public debt; external debt; debt heat map
    JEL: H63 H68
    Date: 2023–04–29
  7. By: Rahmat, Al Fauzi
    Abstract: Halal tourism is a new segment in tourism studies that have received attention and has now proliferated. Past studies have not been so deep in treading global scientific literature on halal tourism studies on tracking its evolution and trends among scientific journal which focuses on social science discipline. Therefore, this article is based on a systematic literature review analysis of halal tourism in social science discipline as an effort to improve our understanding of previous halal tourism studies. Data were obtained from the academic database Scopus, 31 articles were obtained about halal tourism in social science discipline, and the data period was collected from the beginning to the end of 2020. The data is illustrated using two applications, namely NVIVO and VOSViewer, as the primary tools for analyze qualitative data, which selected; (VOSViewer; Keyword Co-occurrence Network Maps and Trend (KCNM/T)), (NVIVO; Hierarchy Chart (HC), word frequencies (WF), and Explore Diagram Analysis (EDA)). The results showed that, from 31 journals, Stephenson (2014) has the most influence with high cited, besides, Tourism Management as a journal name that identified many articles published there, and Routledge as a publisher with a high total journal on Halal Tourism, and Indonesia as a country that high mention time. Specifically, various approaches and distributions based on methodology, objectives, and geography were the research's focus. Recent trends and the dominant frequency of words from the study of halal tourism have shown several scholars' high interest. In the halal tourism studies on social sciences discipline, previous scholars have carried out many different research segments, namely, tourism issues, product issues, destination issues, travel issues, service issues, and market issues. Future research is also considered in this article.
    Date: 2021–10–31
  8. By: Ha Nguyen
    Abstract: Credit risk is a crucial topic in the field of financial stability, especially at this time given the profound impact of the ongoing pandemic on the world economy. This study provides insight into the impact of credit risk on the financial performance of 26 commercial banks in Vietnam for the period from 2006 to 2016. The financial performance of commercial banks is measured by return on assets (ROA), return on equity (ROE), and Net interest margin (NIM); credit risk is measured by the Non-performing loan ratio (NPLR); control variables are measured by bank-specific characteristics, including bank size (SIZE), loan loss provision ratio (LLPR), and capital adequacy ratio (CAR), and macroeconomic factors such as annual gross domestic product (GDP) growth and annual inflation rate (INF). The assumption tests show that models have autocorrelation, non-constant variance, and endogeneity. Hence, a dynamic Difference Generalized Method of Moments (dynamic Difference GMM) approach is employed to thoroughly address these problems. The empirical results show that the financial performance of commercial banks measured by ROE and NIM persists from one year to the next. Furthermore, SIZE and NPLR variables have a significant negative effect on ROA and ROE but not on NIM. There is no evidence found in support of the LLPR and CAR variables on models. The effect of GDP growth is statistically significant and positive on ROA, ROE, and NIM, whereas the INF is only found to have a significant positive impact on ROA and NIM.
    Date: 2023–04
  9. By: Ludovic Mbakop (Department of Economics, Eastern Mediterranean University, Famagusta, Northern Cyprus via Mersin 10, Turkey); Glenn Jenkins (Queen's University); Leonard Leung (Asian Development Bank, Manilla, The Philippines); Kamil Sertoglu (Department of Economics, Eastern Mediterranean University, Famagusta, Northern Cyprus via Mersin 10, Turkey)
    Abstract: This study measures the impact of traceability attributes on international buyers’ willingness to pay for coffee produced in Ethiopia and the impact of accurate information on the production location of the coffee on the pricing according to its type and grade. Two sets of regressions models were used to investigate the important determinant factors affecting the export prices of trader and producer coffee, one each for trader and producer coffee, to measure the impact of the ECX on the prices and to evaluate the effect of the coffee types and grades on the prices. The results show that after coffee was forced to be traded via the ECX, traceable coffee export prices increased more than the reported price of non-traceable coffee. We also found that after the introduction of the ECX, the reported export prices of coffee were much more closely aligned to the movements in the international prices of coffee than before the ECX. Furthermore, we also find evidence that exporters and overseas buyers do not trust the results of the inspection and grading of coffee by the ECX unless traceability is also present. This is the first study to evaluate foreign buyers’ willingness to pay for the attribute of traceability of Ethiopian coffee and to see how traceability has affected buyers’ trust in the grades given by the ECX for the coffee it graded.
    Keywords: Ethiopian commodity exchange, Ethiopian coffee, Coffee traceability, Commoditization
    JEL: D40 E23 Q17
    Date: 2023–04
  10. By: Pinitjitsamut, Montchai; Thamthanakoon, Nithicha; Yaemklin, Sophon
    Abstract: This research study aims to analyze the impact of e-commerce on Thai’s economy and its role plays in driving economic recovery after COVID-19 pandemic by using the CGE simulation analytical model. Since the COVID-19 epidemic on the global and Thai economy, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) predicts a decline in global economic growth due to the pandemic control measures, rehabilitation with vaccines, and financial terms. Thailand has also experienced the impact of the COVID-19 epidemic for approximately one year, which has affected its economy, society, and environment. The government has implemented various measures and policies, including temporary closures and work from home, resulting in a decrease in trade, investment, and tourism. This has led to changes in economic activity, with electronic transactions growing due to the use of technology, which reduces the need for in-person contact. Overall, the pandemic has altered the way people conduct their daily transactions and has resulted in a significant change in living patterns in Thai society. The research findings indicate that the COVID-19 pandemic has significantly impacted the Thai economy with slow recovery. This study indicates that expanding e-commerce transactions could positively impact the economy, but only if it reaches a certain threshold of at least 25% of the predicted growth rate. In comparative analysis, the scenarios with a significant expansion of e-commerce transactions in five sectors of the economy would have had a different impact on the economy. In scenarios B and C, the economy has recovered rapidly, with real GDP growing at 91.81% and 79.81%, respectively, and a significant increase in investment. Scenario C has seen a contraction, but there has been an increase in exports, with overall household income and consumption increasing and government tax collection increasing significantly. Sectors with a low export base, such as construction, transportation, and technical and professional services, would benefit the most. Therefore, e-commerce plays a crucial role in driving the economy towards a more agile and faster recovery than the pre-pandemic period. The policy implications should be initiated are 1). Enhance the accessibility of e-commerce transactions to low-income households. 2). Promote more investment in digital infrastructure to expand e-commerce transactions across sectors. 3). Encourage businesses to adopt e-commerce by providing incentives such as tax breaks and subsidies for investments and 4). Provide training and support to improve people’s digital capabilities.
    Keywords: E-commerce, COVID-19 pandemic, Economic recovery, CGE Analysis
    JEL: C68 O11
    Date: 2023–01–17
  11. By: RePEc, IDEAS
    Abstract: This page is part of a larger set of rankings for research items, serials, authors and institutions made available on this site. A FAQ is available. Only authors registered with the RePEc Author Service are considered. Only works listed on RePEc and claimed as theirs by registered authors are counted. A series of rankings by different criteria are aggregated. The average rank score is determined by taking a harmonic mean of the ranks in each criterion. For a list of criteria, see the general ranking page. Authors with multiple affiliations have their score distributed across regions according to the affiliation shares they provided. The ranking is performed using the set of authors or institutions within the region, recomputing the scores within the set. The ranking done by simply looking up the worldwide ranking for those authors or institutions from this region is provided in the W.Rank column and put in [square brackets]. There are 66166 registered authors evaluated for all the rankings. Authors with multiple affiliations are attributed to each institution according to the weights ("shares") they have set to each in their profile, or by default according to a formula described here. Authors affiliated with subentities of institutions listed in EDIRC are also counted in the latter. Only institutions listed in EDIRC are counted. Subentities of ranked institutions do not increment the rank count and have their rank listed in parentheses. Authors with multiple affiliations have their score distributed across regions according to the affiliation shares they provided. The ranking is performed using the set of authors or institutions within the region, recomputing the scores within the set. The ranking done by simply looking up the worldwide ranking for those authors or institutions from this region is provided in the W.Rank column and put in [square brackets]. Please note that rankings can depend on the number of registered authors in the respective institutions. Register at the RePEc Author Service to be counted. There are 8676 institutions with 66166 registered authors evaluated for all the rankings.
    Date: 2023–04–05
  12. By: Kshitiz Dahal (South Asia Watch on Trade, Economics and Environment)
    Abstract: The Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) is a regional organization consisting of seven countries in South and Southeast Asia, cooperating in several areas, including trade, investment, energy, tourism, and more. This issue brief highlights the weak state of BIMSTEC connectivity and regional integration and introduces BIMSTEC’s plan—BIMSTEC Master Plan for Transport Connectivity—promulgated to enhance transport connectivity in the region. This strategic document aims to enhance transport connectivity between member states over a ten-year period from 2018 to 2028. The brief provides a brief description of each sector covered by the Master Plan and its importance for connectivity in the region. Moreover, the brief discusses the opportunities created by the Master Plan, identifies gaps in the Master Plan, and challenges in implementation.
    Keywords: Bay of Bengal Initiative, BIMSTEC, regional integration, trade, transport connectivity, BIMSTEC Master Plan for Transport Connectivity, Master Plan.
    Date: 2022–12
  13. By: Glenn Jenkins (Queen's University); Mehmet Nazif (Department of Economics, Eastern Mediterranean University, Famagusta, Northern Cyprus via Mersin 10, Turkey)
    Abstract: Border procedures around the globe can act as barriers hindering international trade. Another impact of these procedures relates to their economic resource costs. In this study, using a microeconomic framework of international trade, the potential economic gains are estimated for reductions in trade administration costs related to sea border trade in the Andean Community (CAN) as well as for the increase in import and export trades that are stimulated as a consequence of the reduction in trade administration costs. The potential cost reductions are estimated separately for import and export trade. The estimates are made with respect to the existing levels of trade flows. We measure the excess economic cost of the current trade administration procedures in CAN with respect to two benchmark levels of trade administration costs, namely those for Chile and Singapore. Our results suggest that improving the trade administration cost levels to match those of the reference countries will enable CAN countries to enjoy economic resource savings of between US$1.25 billion and US$1.5 billion annually, corresponding to 0.19% to 0.23% of their gross domestic product. Given the current trade environment of CAN nations, relevant policy and reform options are suggested. The key policy recommendation is to improve the electronic single window system for trade administration and in particular, the interconnectivity of information flows between the member countries of CAN. Maintaining the port infrastructure is also critical for the delivery of efficient services for the movement of goods.
    Keywords: international trade, trade facilitation, trade administration cost, trade transaction costs, economic gain, welfare gain, Andean Community, Latin America
    JEL: F14 F13 D60
    Date: 2023–04
  14. By: Molintas, Dominique Trual
    Abstract: This instrument posits the GCC equation to outline the parameters of the Cordillera Corridor, Tea Trade Treaty. A tea corridor is the strategy for resource use of rugged mountain terrain in the Cordillera, Philippines; and the GCC equation substantiates the rudiments for cross-border competence. GCC would mean the “Gateway to Cross-border Competence” defined in a mathematical construct. The equation has specific relevance in the conjectures of tea cultivation, for the empowerment of Accession. GCC EQUATION = χYZ The strategy significantly underscores trade as a function of equity. With reason of, the research is a manifestation of the theory of change by illustration of the theory of competition. Inclusion and facilitation are the mechanisms of development, construed though farm support infrastructure, investing in health and wellness. Facilitation introduces the earmarking of Tea Tariffs for compulsory university schooling of the generation next. Trade escalates Government liquidity and institutionalizes stable farmer earnings. Given so, good life for these smallholder farmers is achievable. A special section captures the smallholder farmer opinion and sentiment in written and conversational exchange of ideas. Despite the uncalled hyperbole of a Cordillera Corridor intentions for manipulation, the section exposed the farmers' gung-ho to participate in tea cultivation for trade, that can only be curtailed by dearth of expertise and capital.
    Keywords: Cordillera, economic corridor, smallholder farmer, equity, tea, treaty accession
    JEL: B41 C02 C2 C26 J00
    Date: 2023–03–13

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