The World under Pressure: How China and India Are Influencing the Global Economy and Environment

By Carl J. Dahlman | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 1
Rising Powers

THE ECONOMIC RISE OF CHINA AND INDIA since the 1980s is unprecedented in its speed and breadth. These giant countries, which today represent nearly 40 percent of world population, have increased their share of global economic output from 4 percent in 1980 to 18 percent in 2010 in terms of purchasing power parity (an economist’s adjustment for what money can buy).1 Over the same period, their share of global trade has increased from 1 percent to 12 percent. Their rapid entry onto the global stage is creating frictions in trade, finance, foreign investment, intellectual property rights, and competition for natural resources—not to mention concerns about climate change, global governance, security, and balance of power. The world needs to accommodate the rise of these two countries; that much is clear. But this will require difficult adjustments by all major powers, including these two swiftly rising countries themselves. The question is whether the world can accommodate these ascending giants without the aforementioned tensions escalating into major economic and power collisions.


Why This Book? The Rise of These Two Powers
Is Stressing the Global System

There are many books on the growth of one or both of these countries.2 However, none have taken as broad a view of their rise as this book seeks to do, while developing the implications of such a swift upsurge for the global system. Another unique aspect of this book is its historical perspective combined with an appreciation for a new binding

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