Taiwan’s Household Debt 2nd Highest in Asia

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Taiwan’s household debt ratio (compared to GDP) is the second highest in Asia, Michael Heise, chief economist and head of corporate development at Allianz SE, said at a forum in Taipei today, UDN reported.

Heise noted that since the 2008 financial crisis, Taiwan’s household debt ratio saw the third-fastest increase in the region, behind South Korea and Malaysia, respectively. He also predicted that the country’s GDP will grow 2% this year.

Taiwan’s household debt ratio rose to 90.4% from 83.6% in 2010. The average debt is NT$600,000 (US$19,840). Public debt as a percent of GDP was 31.6% in 2015, according to Focus Economics.

US-based ratings agency Fitch said in May that Taiwan’s household debt was much higher than that of Hong Kong and mainland China. In the first half of 2016, Taiwan’s household debt ratio was 82.6%, compared with 66.4% in Hong Kong and 41.8% in China.

Heise added that Taiwan has the third highest per capita asset value (income and investments) in Asia in 2015. Per capita asset value is estimated at EUR99,255 (NT$3.367 million), trailing Singapore and Japan, respectively.

Heise said that the household wealth in emerging markets in Asia has doubled in the past 10 years and is expected to continue growing rapidly in the next 10 years.

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