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For decades, most Southeast Asian economies climbed the income ladder by pursuing a growth strategy based on ramping up investment in export-oriented manufacturing and services, relentlessly upskilling their domestic workforces, and leveraging technological advances.

Today, the ASEAN+3 countries — the 10 member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations plus China, Japan and South Korea — can be proud of their accomplishments. The region’s economic transformation has been breathtaking, from its rising per capita income and share of global GDP to its human capital development and rapid ascent of global business competitiveness rankings.

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