Monday, June 11, 2007

changing forces

In the 19th century, Britain was the super power - because of its military might. Its riches and stature were a result of conquering new lands and new people.

Throughout the 20th century, America has been the super power by virtue of its economic might. Its military might and influence across the world stem largely because it is a very, very rich country.

Now forces are changing again as we head into the 21st century. India and China are gearing up to be the new super powers and because of new factors - their population. The sheer enormousness of the number of Indian and Chinese is going be responsible for making them the most powerful countries in the world. The respective governments, regardless of ideology, should keep their helping (or meddling) hands aside and just take on the role of an enabler. They can do this by building the necessary infrastructure needed for such large populations to thrive. And the populace will, on its own, achieve the military or economic greatness or whatever is needed to become a superpower.


Pallavi Nopany said...

Hey this sort of reminds me of insects. Somebody once told me that humans are nothing but virus on earth, and in my head i see indians and chinese multiplying like those big red ants,or bees coming out of their antholes and and hives and covering all possible.

Anonymous said...

Completely agree. The competitive advantage on India stems from its very low cost population driving labour intensive low tech industries. With a large population, the rich get a lot of output due to the low cost of labour, making the rich richer and the poor poorer.
The 'enabler' role that you mention is exactly what is needed to push the economy up the value chain. Promote education, infrastructure, laws promoting social, economic, opportunity equality and an environment for insustries to flourish.
Mere population growth will perhaps increase the GDP but will kill INdia on all other social and prosperity indexes which are the real indicators.
Though most Asian countries acheived their economic superiority beginning with low-cost "primary" industries, India has the added disadvantage of being a democracy.