15 Global Developments You Need To Watch Over the Next Five Years

Global developments in 2015, both economic and political, ranged from terrorist attacks and tragic incidents in Nigeria and Iraq, the disastrous earthquake in Nepal, over one-million-strong transnational labor migration into Europe, Iran’s nuclear agreement, the climate agreement at the 2015 Paris Climate Conference (COP21) to the prevailing economic slowdown in China, all of which have had repercussions on business operations in each industry.

Hence, each business has to brace itself for future developments.  Let’s explore what they all entail based on appraisals by PhD-holding experts from U.S. universities for the period 2016 – 2020

  1. China has revealed that her GDP growth rate would be lower than 5% (unless domestic consumption could stimulate the economy) while demand for meat consumption would double.  On the other front, territorial disputes in the South China Sea between North Korea and Japan have distracted people’s interest in China’s economy.  Still, the ongoing unrest plus the nation’s economic instability have triggered questions regarding the Communist Party of China’s long-term administration.
  2. In Australia, the falling prices of industrial goods have been a cause of budget deficit as well asfluctuations as regards the economic growth and currency rate while export is expected to pick up due to an increase in China’s demand for both commodities and services.
  3. The falling oil prices have stimulated change in economic growth in numerous countries while North American manufacturers experiencing huge investment losses plan to partially close down business.  Despite the problems prevailing in the coal market, coal consumption continues. Oil prices are bound to once again be impacted by an increase in uncertainties in the Middle East while new alternative energy sources with higher efficiency will emerge to replace fossil fuel.
  4. In Canada, repercussions of the oil price hike cause recessions, an increase in household debt and house prices along with a decrease in employment.
  5. In African countries, an increase in middle-class population will give rise to a global increase in consumption as well as food prices.  The falling oil prices will affect Nigeria’s economy in terms of both commodities and services while unemployment and social unrest will continuously occur in South Africa.
  6. Current technological trends such as The Internet of Things will intensify whereas issues such as privacy and information security will continue to require close scrutiny.
  7. Despite significant productivity boost as a result of robolution, employment is expected to decline while robots will cause a monetary devaluation due to a decrease in the work force which is the core component in business cycle.  In other words, the overall earnings among workers will decline which, in turn, causes a decrease in demand for goods produced by robots.  On the other hand, demand for drones, driverless vehicles and industrial robots will increase.
  8. Saudi Arabia will be faced with domestic unrest and political uncertainties while the regional tensions will intensify.  The government will be compelled by oil-price-related pressures to impose social service budget cuts deemed as a means to stimulate greater demand for social rights and freedom.
  9. Internet risk remains something that requires close scrutiny and a subject of global concern. The monetary authority will start to use various data as part of the current monetary audit while the government will have to initiate its internet power to eradicate cyber-terrorists.
  10. While Japan is faced with demographic problems and will be more receptive to refugees, medical personnel in Southeast Asia must be prepared to cope with and take care of an increasing number of the elderlies.
  11. The European migrant crisis is expected to persist and deter the effort to forge political and fiscal alliance although some countries regard refugees as agents for a demographic increase which could trigger an emergence of new currencies.
  12. The Central Bank will make an effort to improve instabilities prevailing in the areas of stock exchange, credit market and gold market (which is weakening) that have caused a loss of confidence and trust in the bank’s liability.
  13. The success in limiting the transmission of Ebola virus disease in early 2014 has triggered measures among the world’s public health authorities to cope with future health disasters that could take millions of human lives.  At any rate, cross border monitoring and control will become more rigorous as ‘health care’ becomes a big global issue.  An instance of this is the accelerated economic growth of Cuba thanks to medical assistance from the U.S.
  14. The Pacific Alliance – a Latin American trade bloc consisting of four member states, namely Columbia as the center of the bloc, Chile, Mexico and Peru – is growing rapidly serving as gateway to economicdevelopment in Latin America as a whole as evidenced Mexico’s attempt to solve its corruption-based problems, among others.
  15. Intermodal transport both domestic and international is expected to increase as a means to solve truck driver shortage while public infrastructure is efficiently utilized.  This is a result of significantly increased cross border trade and better control on rail freight service charge and more efficient management by third-party logistics service providers.
So, these are potential developments according to experts’ analysis that will definitely affect world as well as each country’s economy. Flexibility is thus a further issue business operators must take into consideration while they keep abreast of various developments.  If and when a development affects their business, having strong business partners who are prepared to jointly overcome difficulties will be better than trying to forge ahead on their own. Simultaneously, collaboration will be the key to survival.  As the saying goes, two (or more) heads are better than one.
Compiled by BLOG.SCGLogistics
Reference and picture credits:  linkedin.com, logisticsmgmt.com
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