India growing but living standards still poor

Written by Agencies | Manila, July 31: | Updated: Jul 31 2007, 16:45pm hrs
Hong Kong, Taiwan and Singapore households enjoy the highest living standards in the Asia-Pacific while those in emerging powerhouses China and India remain poor, according to an Asian Development Bank (ADB) survey Tuesday.

The poll measured the "actual final consumption of households" of 23 Asian economies to determine their well-being and living standards. The final measure includes items purchased as well as those supplied by governments, such as education and health care.

The Chinese territory of Hong Kong was top with 125,303 Hong Kong dollars (USD 16,019) per capita, followed by Taiwan, Singapore, Brunei and Macau.

China and India account for 64 per cent of the total gross domestic product (GDP) of the 23 economies included in the survey.

But in per capita terms, a person living in China spends an average of only 1,470 dollars per year, with India on 1,202 dollars.

The five poorest economies were Nepal, Bangladesh, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam.