113.jpgThere is a lot of talk about the growing power and influence of Brazil, Russia, India and China (the so-called BRIC countries) and companies are falling over themselves to invest in China in particular. For example, according to McKinsey Asia (excluding Japan) will represent 30% of global GDP by the year 2025 (Asia is currently 13% and Western Europe currently represents 30% of global GDP). However, this all has a faint smell of history about it since other countries have been hot before (remember Japan, Germany and the so-called Tiger Economies?). To some observers, China and Russia are also built on foundations of sand. Ethnic violence, widespread corruption and speculative building all have the potential to upset this growth trend. Nevertheless, expect a major shift of economic power to the East.

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