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The Next Superpower

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    All great empires crumble. Soviets, Imperial Japanese. America's day will come too.

    Which country do you think is going to be the next one? China, India, Iran.......????
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    Chances are by the time that happens the world will look a lot different than it does now so it is impossible to predict. Think it is safe to rule out Iran though, will probably be either under a new rule or a layer of trinitite before the turn of the decade.

    For the time being America looks like it is going to hold its title for a long long time.
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    I think it's more likely that America will just be overtaken rather than crumble. The members next group of superpowers will probably all have populations in the billions or hundreds of millions.

    It's also possible that a country with a relatively low population (in the tens of millions) could become a superpower by achieving high levels of economic growth for a sustained period of time, but there don't seem to be any governments competent enough to do that.
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    Iran doesn't have the capacity to become a superpower: it's population is too low; it doesn't have any power projection capabilites and will more than likely remain without any for the foreseeable future; and is surrounded by countries which have joined together in order to contain its expansion, whether economic, political, territorial or militarily - so we can safely rule that one out.

    China is already a superpower in my opinion: its economy, although plagued with inefficiency, will become the world's largest before 2020; it has nuclear weapons; it has a seat at the pinnacle of international law; it may - and I use the word may because nothing is certain - have power projection capabilities before 2020; it has the world's largest population; and is beginning to spread its tentacles throughout the world, notably in Africa and South America, which, in turn, will see its influence in those parts, and indeed other parts, of the world rise.

    India is the wildcard: its economy is predicted to become the world's second largest economy in terms of GDP PPP, behind China, in 2050; it has nuclear weapons, although no seat at the UNSC - but a reform may eventually happen to reflect the current state of affairs rather than that of 1945; it is developing significant power projection capabilities; and has the world's second largest population. My small worries are the following: low literacy, extreme poverty and a severely corrupt government - and yes, the Chinese may be corrupt but they get things done; my major worry is this: China won't accept another superpower in Asia - there will inevitably be a struggle, as there currently is, for regional dominance (see the String of Pearls and the fight between the two countries over Burma's resources).

    It has to be China.
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    Who will be next superpower?

    Last comment by Stalin

    Lol - he wishes

    Oh, and my vote goes to South Korea or even, obscurely....Australia anyone?
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    China, India, Brazil, Russia.
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    China, Russia, Brazil
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    Australia, definitely not unless there is any real significant change but that will not come easy. A two-speed economy is good for short term boosts but it is not sustainable and looking at the current level of government, effectively an in operational one, it will lead to future problems. Really I would say Australia is more likely to collapse than it is to prosper. Reliance on the mining industry will only go so far and if the rest of Australia collapses then so does the support for the industry in things like employees and equipment. Then of course there are the major issues such as WA secessionism that would become of prominence and could lead to a lot worse.
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    China's problem is and always has been, keeping enough internal cohesion going to be able to act as a decisive force on the international stage. That said it already has a lot of influence, it faced the US down successfully in both Korea and Vietnam (at a time when it was pretty broke) and as a result of its sheer vastness it only needs to achieve a quarter the economic output per capita of the US to achieve a larger economy (which of course influences other important factors like military spending).

    I don't honestly thing any nation that's smaller than the US population wise has a chance - it has essentially reached the peak of economic development so surpassing it is purely a numbers game. And that basically leaves only India as another potential contender.

    If it doesn't go bankrupt the EU may eventually be a superpower of sorts, but again its problem is internal - I think it will probably continue to exercise significant external influence but never in the manner of a traditional superpower.
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    (Original post by mali167)
    Iran.......????
    Lol. How is a country with only 76 million people, that is a diplomatically isolated rogue state, with an Islamist fundamentalist government, ever going to be as powerful as the US, Russia, or China?
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    (Original post by internetguru)
    China, India, Brazil, Russia.

    (Original post by Zenomorph)
    China, Russia, Brazil
    I highly doubt Russia. There economy is an oil price drop away from complete collapse. Year on year it requires something like a 10 dollar oil price increase just to stay afloat.
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    (Original post by mali167)
    Iran.......????
    Did you seriously believe Iran has a potential to become a superpower? Or was that just randomly chucked in for the sake of it?
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    (Original post by Aj12)
    I highly doubt Russia. There economy is an oil price drop away from complete collapse. Year on year it requires something like a 10 dollar oil price increase just to stay afloat.
    You mean $10 yearly increase based overall revenues ? Dependency on Oil is a pretty good thing isn't it ?
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    (Original post by Aj12)
    I highly doubt Russia. There economy is an oil price drop away from complete collapse. Year on year it requires something like a 10 dollar oil price increase just to stay afloat.
    The economic predictions predict their economy will be in the top 4 in like 20 years.
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    (Original post by internetguru)
    The economic predictions predict their economy will be in the top 4 in like 20 years.
    Their economy is primarily resources, oil based. That's not exactly a good thing. Predictions aside I don't think a nation an be concerned a superpower with an economy so concentrated on one resource. Predicitons aside they do require regular increases in the oil price to maintain their economy, meaning really they are never that far from a pretty major collapse.
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    (Original post by Aj12)
    Their economy is primarily resources, oil based. That's not exactly a good thing. Predictions aside I don't think a nation an be concerned a superpower with an economy so concentrated on one resource. Predicitons aside they do require regular increases in the oil price to maintain their economy, meaning really they are never that far from a pretty major collapse.
    They also sell a lot of weapons. All it takes is a big war.
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    Map of ranked global cities.



    Increasingly Chinese cities are acceding to global city status and it will soon be reasonable to describe the Chinese as the third superpower, with the world's military superpower in the USA and world's largest economy superpower in the European Union.

    The notion that India will be joining this club is absurd. 1 billion peasants don't make a superpower, America has shown it requires several hundred million linked in big cities. China is increasingly developing its chain of big cities, whilst in India city management is at such a poor level as to make any assertions of superpowerdom absurd.
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    (Original post by That Bearded Man)
    Who will be next superpower?

    Last comment by Stalin

    Lol - he wishes

    Oh, and my vote goes to South Korea or even, obscurely....Australia anyone?
    Let me get this straight: Australia and/or South Korea are going to become superpowers?

    :toofunny:
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    Brazil.
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    None, it's going back to a large number of great powers.

    US, China, India will be the top tier of Great Powers, like Britain, Germany and Russia in 1900. There will then be a second tier consisting of probably the EU and Russia, like Austria-Hungary and the Ottoman Empire in 1900. Japan will probably straddle the middle, like France in 1900, at least until its population implodes.

    Brazil is a very mediocre country without a strategically important position, a particularly large population, or good institutions. I don't buy it.

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Updated: September 10, 2012
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