Over the past 50 years, 18 of the 71 emerging economies outperformed global benchmarks and their peers. This is based on the findings of Mckinsey Global Institute (www.mckinsey.com, September 2018). These 18 countries, led by China, reduced the number of extreme poor by about one billion people since 1990.
The long-term outperformers
Seven countries achieved more than than 3.5 percent per capita gross domestic product (GDP) growth over 50 years. These are: China, South Korea, Singapore, Thailand, Hong Kong, Malaysia and Indonesia, in that order.
The recent outperformers
Eleven countries grew their GDP per capita in the past 20 years. In Asia, they are: Myanmar, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, Cambodia, Laos, India, Kazakhstan, Vietnam and Uzbekistan, in that order. The other two countries outside Asia are Belarus and Ethiopia
The recent accelerators
Five countries saw their GDP per capita growing by over 3.5 percent a year during 2011-2016. In Asia, they are: Bangladesh, the Philippines, Rwanda, Sri Lanka and Bolivia. They are called “future outperformers.” They also ranked in the top 25 percent of Mckinsey’s performance index.
What are the factors that made that made some countries excel?
By Mckinsey analytics, the 18 countries developed pro-growth agenda across public and private sectors. They boosted productivity, income and demand. The productivity drivers are: investment, total factor productivity and labor quality. The income and demand drivers are: household income, corporate income, domestic demand and global demand.
The common features are high investments (or capital accumulation) and deep connections with the global economy. In broad outline:
Outperforming economies improved their government effectiveness, regulatory quality and rule of law.
Quo vadis Philippines?
In the ASEAN, considering the past 50 years, the Philippines has a lot of catching up to do. The “golden years” were elusive. The past six years dramatically improved but its poverty remained very high (21.6 percent in 2015), way more than double that of ASEAN peers.
ASEAN Real GDP per capita growth per year (percent)
|6 Years (a)
Source: World Bank, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, International Monetary Fund, World Intellectual Property Organization; Mckinsey Global Institute analysis
Is there hope for the Philippines?
Yes, if it gets its act together. It will be one of the fastest emerging economies: if government will not mess up its mandate of growth and poverty reduction; if it will sustain investments and global linkages; if it improves institutions and appoint people for competence and integrity, and not just political connections.
Consensus Forecast, 2015-2030
Percent a year
|Country||GDP Growth||GDP per capita|
|Oher Central Asia||7.4||6.6|
|Other South Asia
(Sri Lanka, Pakistan)
Source: Mckinsey Global Institute (September 2018)
(This article reflects the personal opinion of the author and does not reflect the official stand of the Management Association of the Philippines or MAP. The author is the Chair of the MAP AgriBusiness and Countryside Development Committee, and the Executive Director of the Center for Food and AgriBusiness of the University of Asia & the Pacific. Feedback at <firstname.lastname@example.org> and <email@example.com>. For previous articles, please visit <map.org.ph>)