The BRIC group – How Strong a Challenge to the West?

Jan Winiecki

Published: June 2012

This article looks at the BRIC countries with the understanding that countries not only grow, but also undergo structural change. Industrialisation first and the shift from industry to human capital intensive-services economy later. Moreover, it is stressed that the latter transformation requires not only more economic, but also civic and political freedom. From that perspective the ‘tectonic shifts’ in the global economy, predicted by many, are more doubtful than many protagonists of ‘China as the No. 1’ idea would be ready to admit. Especially Russia and China present themselves as countries with a serious problem to overcome. And the assessment excludes a lot of problems all countries of the BRIC group will be facing in the years and decades to come.

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