World's center of economic gravity shifts east
The global center of economic gravity has shifted east over the past 30 years (black dots), and could well shift even farther east over the next 30 years (red dots).
April 7th, 2011
01:56 PM ET

World's center of economic gravity shifts east

Editor's Note: Danny Quah is a professor of economics at the London School of Economics and author of the new paper, The Global Economy's Shifting Center of Gravity.

By Danny Quah – Special to CNN

As late as 1980, North America and Western Europe produced more than two thirds of this planet’s income.  Not unexpectedly then, the world economic center of gravity 30 years ago was a point deep in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, 900 miles west of Morocco.

By 2008, however, because of the continuing rise of India, China and the rest of East Asia, that center of gravity had shifted to a point just outside Izmir Turkey, east of Helsinki and Bucharest - a drift of 3000 miles, or about three quarters of the Earth’s radius.  My projection has it that this move east will continue until 2050 when the world economic center of gravity will cluster on the border between India and China, 400 miles east of Katmandu.

Let me explain what I mean by "global center of gravity."


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Topics: Economy