July 18, 2016

Terror of Uncertainty and the Demographics of Anxiety

Shankkar Aiyar, Visiting Fellow at IDFC Institute, analyses the reasons behind the rising discontent across developed and developing countries in this article. He opines that rising instances of violence and intolerance around the world demonstrate individual and institutional failure and are the result of changing demographics. 


"Between now and 2050, world population will rise from 7.3 billion to 9.7 billion, that is an addition of over 2.4 billion. The population in the developed world will barely rise —from 1.25 billion to 1.28 billion. The bulk of the increase of over two billion will be in the poor and less developed countries. Essentially the developed world is acquiring dependency while the less developed poor countries will be hard put to find jobs to the burgeoning workforce. Strangely, governments have refused to engage on this and chosen to live in denial about its implications. The terror of uncertainty is being propelled by the demographics of anxiety. The impact of this is visible in the global economy and on the charts of global debt and deficit. Rising dependency has pushed up the debt of ageing nations, hurt consumption and investment, lowered growth rates and has set the stage for what Larry Summers has eloquently described as secular stagnation. It is no surprise that currently over $11 trillion of government bonds are yielding negative returns. The anxiety in the developed economies is about the future."


Read the complete article here

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