Ganeshan Wignaraja (Dr.) - Principal Economist, Office of Regional Economic Integration, Asian Development Bank
Dirk Willem te Velde - Head of Investment and Growth Programme, ODI
Dr. Masuma Farooki - Visiting Research Fellow, Development Policy and Practice Unit, Open University (UK)
Adrian Hewitt - Head of the ODI Fellowship Scheme and Research Fellow, ODI
This meeting tackled one of the pressing economic issues of our time by exploring how Europe, the UK and Africa might forge closer economic ties with a rising Asia to mutual advantage. The continued rise of Asia since the global financial crisis - led by giants China and India - is striking in today's world economy characterized largely by stagnation. Other economies in the developing world are wondering whether there is any room for them on the lower end of industrialization ladder or in new services exports. Developed economies are also concerned about maintaining competitive advantages in high end manufacturing and mature service industries as well as preserving jobs. Tendencies towards protectionism and inward-orientation seem on the increase which may put global recovery at risk. There is little doubt that Asia's rise, particularly in China and India, has significant positive and negative implications for the global economy and countries at all levels of development. New policies - covering trade, investment, aid and the environment - will be needed to enable Europe and the UK to reap the benefits of Asia's rise.