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UNEVENLY DISTRIBUTED: CHINA AND THE FUTURE OF WORK IN SOUTHEAST ASIA

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Room 120, C.K. Choi Building

1855 West Mall

Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z2

Canada

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This presentation reviews the findings of a series of International Development Research Centre papers on the Future of Work. Digitization of ever-more connected and networked value chains permits faster, simpler, and cheaper trade within Southeast Asia and with trading partners outside the region. Digital trade in products and services connects small entrepreneurs to regional marketplaces while innovation and growth in digital finance bring widespread benefits. China is the largest external investor in Southeast Asia’s digital economy and these investments are among the more significant offshore investments to date by China’s fintech industry. Whether and how Southeast Asian economies can retain the advantage in manufacturing and continue structural transformations in agriculture, government, and services in the face of such technological disruption is a story of global relevance, particularly to other emerging economies working hard to develop their own manufacturing. Southeast Asian countries are the “canaries in the coal mine” for the effects of AI and automation on emerging economies.

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Room 120, C.K. Choi Building

1855 West Mall

Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z2

Canada

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