July 19, 2018 / 1:36 AM / 5 months ago

ADB maintains 2018, 2019 GDP growth forecasts for developing Asia

An employee works next to molten iron at a steel mill of Dongbei Special Steel in Dalian, Liaoning province, China July 17, 2018. REUTERS/Stringer

MANILA (Reuters) - The Asian Development Bank said developing Asia is on track to meet growth expectations for this year and 2019, but warned that rising U.S. protectionist trade measures and countermeasures from China and others pose “a clear downside risk”.

The Manila-based institution, which released an update of its Asian Development Outlook on Thursday, kept its 2018 and 2019 economic growth estimates for the region at 6.0 percent and 5.9 percent, respectively.

The ADB made only a few small changes in the forecasts made in April. It now sees Indonesia growing 5.2 percent this year, instead of 5.3 percent, and has raised its forecast for Thailand to 4.2 percent from 4.0 percent.

The lender said that it factored tariffs imposed by July 15 into the latest forecasts, though it added “the risk of further ratcheting up of protectionist measures could undermine consumer and business confidence and thus developing Asia’s growth prospects.”

Reporting by Enrico dela Cruz; Editing by Richard Borsuk

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