India's economy grows to be bigger than all Africa combined

India, the smallest economy of the four BRIC nations (Brazil, Russia, India & China), saw its GDP surged past the entire African continent last year. It effectively means any of the four now has a bigger economy than all the 54 African states combined.

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India (in fact, all the BRIC) now has a bigger economy than the whole continent of Africa

In 2010, Indian GDP stood at $1.724 trillion while the 54 states in Africa worth $1.759 trillion (including Somalia and Western Sahara) Both experienced a slowdown in GDP growth last year amid the global financial crisis, with the Indian GDP in 2011 growing 6.9% (down from the projected 8.5%), while Africa on average grew 3.7% (down from the forecast 4.9%)

With that, as the year ended December 2011, the nominal GDP of India is slightly more than $1.84 trillion while Africa slightly over $1.82 trillion. They are however, largely dwarfed by China ($7 trillion) and the United States ($15 trillion). China is growing 8.5% in 2011, more than four times faster than the United States 1.8%, the leadership in China planned for 2025 as the year China overtakes the U.S., and international economist observers and financial analysts seem to agree it would be around that range of time. IMF says 2019, Goldman Sachs predicted 2027, while World Bank put it as 2030.

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Not only that, India has also become the world’s third largest manufacturing nation as of 2011. China has replaced the United States as the ‘workshop of the world’, with an industrial output of $5.31 trillion (21.8% of the world’s production) The United States comes second by producing $3.33 trillion worth of goods (13.7% of the world’s production), while India third at $1.18 trillion (4.8% of world’s production) Japan fourth at 4.5%, while Russia has overtook Germany to be the fifth at 3.6%, 0.1% higher than Germany.

Despite its rich resources, the 54 nations in Africa have not yet manage to advance industrially. Africa produces only just 1% of the world’s industrial output. This is ironically, even less than the island of Taiwan, which account for 1.1% of global industrial output.

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A sad and unfortunate case in humanity: an island (Taiwan) produces more than an entire continent (Africa)

China and India traditionally held the no.1 economy title throughout much of the world’s histories. The Indian kingdoms around what is known as India today built up robust civilization and became the world’s top economy in ancient time. The formation of China’s Han dynasty later catapulted China into the world’s largest economy until 1600s when the Ming dynasty broke down. The Mughal Empire in India surpassed China economically for a short period time but a resurgent China was able to retake the throne.

The 1800s industrial revolution drove Britain to out-produce China in industrial output, eventually replaced the Middle Kingdom in 1820s to be the top economy. One hundred years later, across the Atlantic, a formidable economic rival appeared. In 1900s, the United States eclipsed Britain in industrial output, and by 1920s solidified its position as world largest economy. Another one hundred years now that China has produce more than the U.S. industrially, historians highlight 2020s as that fateful decade.

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GDP projection: 2014 to 2054

India is expected to overtake the U.S. economically by 2050. Infrastructure however, remains the weakest point for India. If the country couldn’t manage or modernize its infrastructure on time, the timeline might be postponed to 2060. By 2050, the Chinese economy would be 2 times the United States, while the Indian economy 7 times its former colonial ruling power the United Kingdom. By 2080, China and India would reignite their battle for world economic supremacy, something they both have been doing since the Iron Age.