[Excerpt] Developing Asia’s economies are returning to healthy growth. In the face of continued sluggishness in the United States, the euro area, and Japan, the region is finding ways to bolster its resilience. The Asian Development Outlook 2013 estimates regional growth will pick up to 6.6% in 2013 and reach 6.7% in 2014. While this is a distinct improvement on 2012, when growth stood at just over 6%, it is far from the heady double-digit pace before the global financial crisis.
But in many ways this new Asian reality is a positive development. Leading regional economies are settling into a pattern of more moderate, more sustainable growth, founded on new opportunities nearer to home. Asia’s contributions to global imbalances—its persistent current account surpluses—are smoothly winding down. Muted demand from wealthy countries is providing the impetus for the region to turn to internal sources and trade with its neighbors. With the major industrial economies expected to grow by only 1% in 2013, the roles of domestic demand and intra-Asian trade will continue to expand.