As 2020 has showed us, large-scale change can happen very rapidly. So it's not difficult to imagine that a decade from now, the countries at the forefront of the global economy will look quite different than they do today.
Analysis shows us that we're in for a major reshuffle, and that by 2030 emerging markets will make up seven out of 10 of the world's largest economies.
Leading the way will be Asia, with the continent's GDP share rising from 28% to 35%: amounting to Europe and the US's combined GDP. This is largely due to population dynamics. With a country's economic growth often tied to the age and size of its population, countries like Japan, with an ageing population and falling birthrates, will move down the ranks, making way for countries like Turkey and Indonesia.
At a glance: The world in 2030
- 8.5 billion: the world's population will reach new highs.
- 5bn: the bulk of the world's population will live on the Asian continent
- 5.4bn: the majority of the world will be middle class earners, up from 3bn in 2015.
- 35%: about a third of the world's economic wealth will be generated by the Asian continent.
- New players: the global economy will be dominated by China, India will overtake the United States, and Egypt's economy will be greater than Australia's.
Let's take a look at what some of the largest economies will look like in 2030.
China has long been tipped to reach the number one spot as the world's most powerful economy. The Asia Power Index indicates that the rising superpower will overtake the United States by 2030, with its GDP reaching US$38tn.
China's growth has averaged 6% over the last 30 years. However, this will slow down to 5% by 2030, reflecting a natural slowdown as its population stabilises.
The World Bank and International Monetary Fund predict that India's growth will reach $19tn in 2030. With 7.8% average growth expected, India is projected to be the world's fastest-growing economy over the next 10 years. It's also expected to surpass China in the population stakes over the next decade.
Ongoing reforms, including the introduction of goods and services tax, will help accelerate growth, an IMF report said. However, India is also facing a number of challenges. Some of its largest states are poverty-stricken, including Delhi, which has a GDP per capita of $4000, qual to Indonesia. Other large cities are even poorer.
Currently the world's largest economy, the United States is expected to topple from its top spot by 2030, with an economy sitting at about $23tn. Standard Chartered has projected that China will overtake the superpower within the next couple of years, based on the purchasing-power-parity exchange rates and GDP.
Using the former measurement, China is already considered the largest economy on the planet.
Currently the world's 16th largest economy, the Asian nation of Indonesia is set to reach the top five, with a GDP rising from its current $3.2tn to $5.4tn by 2030.
In the next decade, Indonesia's population is set to swell by 90 million, pushing a rapid urbanisation. Coupled with labour productivity improvements, the strong, young workforce has already boosted the country's economy. The country is rich in natural resources, but unlike typical Asian "tiger" economies, Indonesia's economy has been driven by consumption, not exports or manufacturing.
Turkey is tipped to become the 12th largest economy 2030, with its overall GDP rising to US$2.7tn.
Turkey's young, increasingly educated and middle class population puts the country in good stead for continued growth over the next decade. The country's young population has ensured labour productivity is higher than many OECD countries, and growing sectors like technology and energy. Currently, Turkey's sectors are investing heavily in research and development, which will bear fruit in the coming decade.
Other factors driving Turkey's ascendancy include the export sector, which will ramp up by a third over the coming years as Turkey's automotive and industrial production grows. Mineral exports will also climb as demand by developing countries in Asia increases. Construction and real estate will continue to be economic drivers, although measures to attract outside investment like Turkish citizenship by investment will likely cease as domestic demand rises.
The breadth of Turkey's industries means the country is relatively self sufficient, as well as being well placed to provide jobs and meet domestic consumer demand as Turkey's youthful population matures.
Brazil's economy is expected to grow strongly over the next decade, with its GDP projected to rise from US$3.2tn to US$4.4tn by 2030. With a domestic market of almost 200 million people, a rapidly expanding middle class and an expanding economy, Brazil has always been a global player. However, over the last two decades a set of reforms have helped alleviate poverty, increase access to education and increase foreign and domestic investment.
Brazil's industries, particularly agriculture and natural resources extraction, have plenty of room for growth, coupled with improved rates of education and health, mean there's plenty of room for optimism in Brazil's future.
However, while education has improved, there's still a few gaps which mean there is currently a lack of trained Brazilian professionals to work in the country's expanding industries.
Of all the countries on this list, Egypt will make the biggest leap, with its economy expanding by almost 600% by 2030. This massive leap coincides with a rapid growth in the country's population, which is tipped to increase by 30% to 128m by 2030.
Russia's economy is predicted to drop from sixth to eighth place on the list, with its economy reaching $4.7tn by 2030. However, the country's economy will still expand considerably over the next decade.
Russia's economy is undergoing a long period of stagnation, with the country predicted to expand by a relatively low 1.5% over the next few years. Each year, the country will fall further and further behind the average global growth, which is predicted to be 3% each year over the next decade. This stagnation began in 2013, after a double shock of falling oil prices and economic sanctions sent Russia into a recession.
Japan's economic position is predicted to flatline over the next 10 years, as the country's ageing population contributes to a shrinking workplace that could undermine decades of economic growth. By 2030, the population of over 65s is expected to rise to 30%, from 17% in 2000.
Japan's GDP will grow from its current level of $5.4tn to $5.6tn.
By 2030, Germany will remain the strongest economy in western Europe, its economy growing from $4.2tn to $4.7tn.
It's likely we'll be in for more changes between now and 2030. However, in countries like Turkey, which have strong economic fundamentals and a young, dynamic population, any storms will likely be weathered and an upward trajectory maintained.
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