Access to Finance; Banks & Banking Reform; Labor Markets; Labor Policies; Population Policies
East Asia and Pacific
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Summary: Talent, skills, and the ability to work are people's most important assets. The majority of people realize the value of these assets in the labor market, whether they sell their time to others or pursue their own enterprise. Work is often the channel through which the benefits of economic growth spread and living standards improve. This has been especially evident since 1990, as the share of the world's population living in poverty has declined by half. The prospects of working people in East Asia Pacific are better than those of many living elsewhere. The flow of goods and services within the region, integration with the global economy, price stability, rule of law, and relatively unfettered markets all foster opportunities for advancement through work that people in other regions regard with envy. In East Asia Pacific, work has brought more people out of poverty and closer to middleclass prosperity faster during the past three decades than in any other place and at any other time. The first (chapters 1, 2, and 3) describes the context: what is unique about East Asia Pacific, how diverse are the profiles of households and firms within the region, and how is the contribution of work to well-being changing. The second part (chapters 4, 5, and 6) reviews policy and takes stock of the prevailing models in East Asia Pacific and how they affect the prospects of and outcomes for working people. The third part (chapters 7, 8, and 9) looks at the policies that governments in East Asia Pacific economies may wish to consider sustaining the transformative impact of work, even as growth in the region begins to moderate.
Official, scanned versions of documents (may include signatures, etc.)