Emerging Superpower or Flailing Communist Ideal?
China has undoubtedly become a prominent figure in the global stage of economics, influencing major aspects such as oil and commodity prices, corporate domino effects, and drastically affecting trade across the international platform even with slight fluctuations in its own economy. Such economic and political power has accelerated China’s advance towards being the largest economy by GDP and other designated economic indicators (China is estimated to become the next global superpower by 2028) and has enabled China to become the largest economy on a purchasing power parity basis*, as well as the largest manufacturer (28.4% of the total manufacturing output), merchandise trading partner (16%), and holder of foreign exchange reserves ($3 Trillion).But first, let us take a step back — what is a Global Superpower anyway?
*Purchasing Power Parity (PPP) is a popular metric used by macroeconomic analysts to compare different countries’ currencies. See more at https://www.investopedia.com/updates/purchasing-power-parity-ppp/
What is a Global Superpower?
Contrary to widespread belief, the criteria for a country to be a Global Superpower do not only include its GDP (Gross Domestic Product) in comparison to other countries. Instead, many aspects must be considered, such as the level of per capita income, social justice and income equality, the degree of academic knowledge generated by the country, as well as the ability to influence regional and global peace and order. For many years, the United States has been referred to as the only Global Superpower, however, as global trade and relationships have diversified, there are many potential Global Superpowers who may overtake the US due to economic growth.
How has COVID-19 changed this?
Before the Novel Coronavirus Pandemic, China’s steep ascent to a Global Superpower was predicted to occur during 2033, which was when it would surpass the current Superpower, the US, in economic indicators. However, due to the contrasting responses by each taken amidst the global pandemic, China’s economic fallout was much smaller than that of the US, meaning that they are now expected to exceed the US as soon as by 2028, 5 years earlier than preliminary predictions. In oppose to this, the USA’s faulty response to the pandemic has caused it $8 Trillion, 3% of the total GDP of the country. With these figures in mind, it is expected that the US will face rapid declines in their economy, already suffering from the unprecedented 32.9% blow during the pandemic.