India, South Asia's economic powerhouse, saw sharply reduced economic growth during the course of the crisis, in part due to reduced demand for Indian exports from major importers like Western Europe and the United States. As a result, the Indian stock market was severely hit, with major indices losing well over 50 percent of their values. The Indian financial sector, however, remained relatively isolated and saw little direct impact from the financial turmoil in many parts of the industrialized world. Lobbying internationally ahead of April 2009 G-20 summit meetings, India pressed for trade openness, and particularly for trade-financing outlays--which world leaders did commit to at the summit. Regionally, experts feared the crisis could foment further turmoil in Pakistan, India's neighbor. Should rising Pakistani debt make the country's government less able to control extremism, they said, the result could be security problems, and potentially economic problems for India and other South Asian countries. These fears were underlined by the late 2008 terrorist attacks in Mumbai, which India's government said were linked to Pakistan. In late March 2009, the IMF approved a loan of $847 million to Pakistan.
The following is a list of resources offering background on South Asian economies and analysis on how they might fare in the downturn.
- Transcript: Can America Handle the Rise of Asia?
- Outlook India Photoessay: Business 2008
- Interview: Alan Rosling on India's Business Landscape
Optimists and Pessimists
- Foreign Policy: India's Financial Secret Weapon
- Transcript: Impact of the Global Financial Crisis on Developing Nations
- Transcript: Immunity and Opportunity in Asia: Implications of the Financial Crisis
- Business Standard: Self-Insurance: The Debate India Must Have
- Expert Brief: For India, Crisis Brings Some Pain with Long-Term Opportunities
- Backgrounder: Financial Crisis May Worsen Poverty in China, India
Economics and Politics