in: Breuer, Anita / Daniele Malerba / Srinivasa, Srigiri / Pooja Balasubramanian (eds.), Governing the interlinkages between the SDGs: approaches, opportunities and challenges, London: Routledge, 192-210
This chapter focuses on the poverty, inequality and growth trends in four low and middle-income countries in East and South East Asia – namely the Philippines, Vietnam, Thailand, and Mongolia, in the decade post-2000. Having understood the landscape of social policies, including health and education in the four East Asian countries, it discusses how successful have the countries been in reducing poverty and inequality. The chapter assesses social protection systems, including access to health and education in East and South East Asia from two key parameters: level of public expenditure on social protection, health and education, and coverage or universalization of different programs. The main argument against universal coverage is the high public expenditure. Higher levels of economic growth are associated with increasing inequality levels. In a study by the Centre for Equity Assessment, they assess how progressive a fiscal policy is in order to reduce poverty and inequality within the tax-transfer framework.