The end of the noughties has spawned an enormous number of comparisons about the trends during the last decade. Buy why stop at the decade? We thought we’ll go the whole hog and show you some charts based on economic historian Angus Maddison’s estimates of the gross domestic product (GDP) of the world from as far back as the year 1000. The chart shows GDP (in 1990 purchasing power parity terms) of India and China as a percentage of world GDP.
From 2000 onwards, we have used the data from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) database, again in purchasing power parity terms. Unfortunately, IMF computations are different from that of Maddison, which accounts for the slight dip in India and China’s share of world GDP in the chart. Notice, however, the sharp improvement in both India’s as well as China’s shares after they opened up their economies and the driver of growth shifted from the state to the private sector.
IMF projections are up to 2014, when India and China together are predicted to account for 22.8% of world GDP, although China’s share will be much bigger than India’s. In the year 1600, together they accounted for 51.4% of world GDP.
For India, its share of world GDP at 5.9%, according to IMF’s projections, are still far below Maddison’s estimate of India’s 8.6% share of world GDP in 1900. We have a long way to go.
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