The Graying of the Great Powers
Is demography destiny? Another non linearity coming up! Ageing is old, but depopulation is new. Major nations will age into irrelevance starting in the 2020s. The USA, alone among the major nations, will not. Through sheer numbers alone, the USA will still be a force to be reckoned with as Germany, Italy, France, Russia and maybe China gray. Maybe China, as we’ve mentioned in the ‘rise of the rest’, that China may grow old before it grows rich. In the 2020s, China is supposed to outstrip the USA’s GDP, while still remaining a middle income country, and also that’s when it’s working population goes into decline.
Have we worked the economics of depopulation into our futures? Not just Singapore which is one of the fastest depopulating nations around, except we top it up through immigration. Will Chimerica make it through China’s great depopulation? Will they become another Japan (in the good sense of the word) in time? Can SGP’s strategic relevance to an ageing China, India, S Korea be bolstered beyond the usual selling of old-age management solutions? What surprises does the USA have in store for us? And of course, the most ‘young’ populations around us are Indonesia, Philippines in the 2020s etc? How do we get their best of their young to be working in Singapore then? Can we orient our economy, or at least diversify, to suit their economies?