The global economy is experiencing a major downturn. A global financial crisis has caused economic activity to stall and dimmed the outlook for global growth. While the severity and duration of the crisis are still unclear, the major industrial countries are already in or close to recession and the global slowdown is expected to be deeper and much more prolonged than previously anticipated. As the deepening financial crisis intensifies its grip on the global economy, Asian economies have begun to feel its effects. The recently revised 2009 forecasts of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) for aggregate gross domestic product growth in developing Asia are 3 percentage points lower than growth in 2007, and 1 percentage point lower than in 2008.