Emerging markets

Issue #11

The World Bank began using the term 'emerging markets' in the 1980s, when it became apparent that countries such as Thailand, Chile or Saudi Arabia could not accurately be described as 'less economically developed.' Now the term has almost come full circle; with the financial crisis in 2008, the world has become dependent on growth in China, India, Brazil and others.

Yet emerging markets are not necessarily an economic saviour. In most cases, they remain countries in which political risk is fundamental as economic risk. They have, for the most part, greater poverty and ecological liabilities than in industrial countries. Moreover, emerging markets are trying to pack the development of industrial countries into a much more condensed time period. The opportunities may be plentiful; but so are the risks.