The Asian Development Bank expects economic growth in developing and newly industrialized economies of Asia and the Pacific in 2020 to slow sharply to 2.2% due to the impact of the new coronavirus.

The forecast for "developing Asia" -- excluding Japan, Australia and New Zealand -- compares with the 5.2 percent growth recorded in 2019, according to the Manila-based bank.

"No one can say how widely the COVID-19 pandemic may spread, and containment may take longer than currently projected," ADB Chief Economist Yasuyuki Sawada said, adding that severe financial turmoil and financial crises are possible.

(Photo taken March 27, 2020, shows a shopping street in New Delhi being closed. India entered a nationwide lockdown on March 25 to control the coronavirus spread.)

Growth of the 45 economies covered by the forecast, including China and India, has been on the decline after posting overall growth of 6.2 percent in 2017.

The growth slowed to 5.9 percent in 2018, and to 5.2 percent in 2019 amid weakening global trade and investment and the trade conflict between the United States and China.

Growth in China, the first country to be hit by the virus, this year is projected to decelerate to 2.3 percent from 6.1 percent in 2019.

India's economic downturn is expected to be more tapered, with growth expected to fall to 4.0 percent this year from 5.0 percent.

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