After a disappointing 2019, growth prospects in developing Asia have worsened under the impact of the current health crisis. Signs of incipient recovery near the turn of this year were quickly overthrown as COVID-19 broke out in January 2020 in the region’s largest economy and subsequently expanded into a global pandemic. Disruption to regional and global supply chains, trade, and tourism, and the continued spread of the outbreak, leave the region reeling under massive economic shocks and financial turmoil. Across Asia, the authorities are responding with policies to contain the outbreak, facilitate medical interventions, and support vulnerable businesses and households. Assuming that the outbreak is contained this year, growth is expected to recover in 2021. Especially to face down fundamental threats such as the current medical emergency, innovation is critical to growth and development. As some economies in developing Asia challenge the innovation frontier, many others lag. More and better innovation is needed in the region to sustain growth that is more inclusive and environmentally sustainable. Five key drivers of innovation are sound education, productive entrepreneurship, high-quality institutions, efficient financial systems, and dynamic cities that excite knowledge exchange. The journey to creating an innovative society takes long-term commitment and hard work.