These are my random musings. Hopefully they will be witty, insightful, and frequently updated.
Who will it be? China? India? Somebody else?
Published on November 13, 2006 By singrdave In World Trade Issues
According to the National Intelligence Council 2020 Mapping the Global Future report, what are the major changes that may occur in the international landscape—and who might the major players and states be?

The overarching challenge for the next 14 years is globalization. Humanity must use it to its fullest potential; through globalization,
humanity's lot will be permanently improved. The countries best positioned to benefit from globalization are Brazil, Russia, India, and China. The BRIC nations "are most frequently identified as rising powers that will shape the geopolitical landscape of the 21st Century" (Mansingh). Developing economies that most benefit from this wave of globalization will be enriched and stabilized.

With the gradual integration of China, India, and other developing countries into the global economy, hundreds of millions of working-age adults will join what is becoming, through trade and investment flows, a more interrelated world labor market. World patterns of production, trade, employment, and wages will be transformed. (NIC)

China and India are two different nations with some similarities. Though the United States (US) has had a longer, deeper relationship with China, and though India lags behind its neighbor in economic and military respects, India is poised for huge and rapid improvement.

Western outsourcing of computer programming, data entry, and accounting has heavily impacted Indian society for the better. Foreigners invest heavily in India's infrastructure. "Hundreds of millions of dollars were invested in putting broadband connectivity... [creating] a platform from where intellectual work, intellectual capital, could be delivered from anywhere.... What you are seeing in Bangalore today is really a culmination of all those things coming together" (Friedman 6-7). India has a vibrant, established democracy and is very open to foreign investment. "India presents to the US a great opportunity to overcome Cold War history and the US has met it by forming a 'strategic partnership' with India in the past few years" (Mansingh). India has a bright future indeed.

The time has come for the Chinese. Their phenomenal economic growth over the past twenty five years has made it the manufacturing hub of the world. It is often the final assembly stage of Asian production networks, and the second most common destination (after the US) for direct foreign investment (Economist).

Countries such as China and India will be in a position to achieve higher economic growth than Europe and Japan, whose aging work forces may inhibit their growth. Given its enormous population—and assuming a reasonable degree of real currency appreciation—the dollar value of China’s gross national product (GNP) may be the second largest in the world by 2020. (NIC)

China also holds almost one trillion dollars of foreign exchange reserves, and its growing import rate promises that China will be the locomotive of growth in much of Asia and the Pacific for the foreseeable future (Mansingh). Politically, their diplomacy of reassurance to its neighbors based on the principles of peaceful coexistence and non-interference, along with its willingness to engage in multilateral negotiations (Ibid.) assure that China is a force with which to be reckoned.

A rising tide is said to raise all boats. Nations other than China and India are sure to capitalize on globalization. "The economies of other developing countries, such as Brazil and Indonesia, could surpass all but the largest European economies by 2020" (NIC). Only time will tell how beneficial globalization will be to the world at large.

Friedman, Thomas. The World Is Flat. New York: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux; 2006.
Mansingh, Surjit. "Rising Powers: Potential Challenges to US Power." Anne Arundel Community College, 25 April 2006.
"Pocket World Figures, 2006." The Economist.

on Nov 13, 2006
I'd like to expand on one idea for a minute... globalization has the power "to transform politics, impact economic growth and raise (or lower) living standards."

A recent episode of Morgan Spurlock's "30 Days" sent a recently-downsized computer programmer to India. Basically he was to follow his job to Bangalore and see what the other end of globalization was like. It was fascinating and quite illuminating for the guy and for the viewers. One American's salary raises the standard of living for at least five Indian workers. Do not forget their families, their extended families, etc. Their basic living wage is amazingly inadequate by our standards, yet it truly improves the lot of many Indians. Added income means more buying power, better educational opportunities, better infrastructure (roads, bridges, schools, hospitals), and just an all-around higher quality of life. Instead of living in squalor, globalization allows for the formation of a working, upwardly-mobile foreign middle class. As the outsourced worker said, "If my salary can better the lives of five families here in India, they can have it. I'll go get another job."
on Nov 13, 2006
I predict that if the US won't do something, China will be the big dog on the block. Not necessarily the supreme one, but they will have a large chunk.

I predict:

China - Economic, Political

USA - Military, Political

Those are the two areas i think both countries will be at. I can't think of any others at the moment, so if anyone adds to it, thanks.