Emerging markets growth leaderboard
The latest projections from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) are for growth from emerging markets to be significantly stronger than from developed economies in 2020.
In some respects this is unsurprising. The nature of the populations of emerging market countries or their ‘demographics’ are a key advantage over so-called developed economies in the UK, US and Europe which are struggling to contend with increased numbers of older people and a shrinking work age population.
As economies transition from developing to developed status an increasing proportion of the population will be middle class with disposable income to spend. This is likely to result in an increase in consumer spending. These factors combined mean emerging markets have an in-built advantage when it comes to economic growth.
However, there is significant divergence between the prospects for different emerging markets as the table indicates.
Factors such as geo-political tensions, tax increases, change of market policy, inability to control inflation and changes in laws regarding resource extraction are all obstacles to growth. Major political instability can also result in civil war and a shutdown of industry, as workers either refuse or are no longer able to do their jobs. While volatility in emerging markets’ economies and shares is often matched by their currencies.
According to the IMF’s analysis, Asia is set to lead the way powered by 7% and 5.8% GDP growth from India and China respectively – while Latin America and the Caribbean presents a much less buoyant picture amid lingering political turmoil in countries like Venezuela and Argentina.