Oil price surge threatens Asia’s growth

A FURTHER sharp rise in oil prices poses a threat to Asia's economic growth, an Asian Development Bank (ADB) senior economist said in a published report yesterday. 

“Although high oil prices have so far had only a moderate impact on Asian economies, a further rise in prices could tighten constraints on growth,” Business Times quoted Cyn-Young Park as saying. 

The ADB estimates suggest a further US$10 (RM36) increase in the price above current levels of around US$70 (RM250) a barrel would cut Asia's growth by 0.2% in a full year, reduce the aggregate trade balance of the region by 0.5% and raise consumer prices by 0.5%. 

If Asian central banks tighten policy to anticipate the inflation that rising energy costs are signalling, the impact of the latest oil shock could be worse, the bank warned. 

Inflation accelerated in Thailand, Malaysia, the Philippines and Indonesia, according to the report. – dpa  

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