Handbooks of Research on International Political Economy series
Edited by Anthony Payne and Nicola Phillips
Chapter 10: 'Emerging' powers and the governance of global trade
Conventional wisdom suggests that Western, and particularly United States, dominance of global economic regimes is being challenged by the rise of a group of 'emerging' powers known as the BRICS, supported by a loose collection of second-tier states referred to rather colloquially as the 'next 11, and followed by at least two dozen more that have rapidly moved from low-to middle-income status since the early 2000s (Kenny and Sumner 2011). Not only have the largest of these states experienced dramatic and enviable growth rates in recent years, but their control of energy supplies, importance in global food markets, dominance of production and consumption patterns, and resource acquisition strategies (Moyo 2012), among other things, have also singled them out as new forces to be reckoned with. Moreover, the attention devoted to the rise of these powers has been accentuated by the economic misfortunes of the Western powers following the 2007-09 financial crisis and the economic stagnation and recession it has engendered. Perceptions of the relative demise of the industrial states and the rise of their non-Western counterparts have been driven by a scholarly, practitioner and media commentary that has sometimes been quite alarmist in tone.
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