DEFINITION of 'Asian Century'

The dominant role that could be played by Asia in the 21st century, because of its growing economic clout and global demographic trends. "Asian Century" as a theme, has gained credence following the rapid economic growth of China and India since the 1980s, which has propelled them to the top ranks of the world's biggest economies. While the term is first believed to have been coined in the 1980s, it gained traction following the release of a report by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) in August 2011.

BREAKING DOWN 'Asian Century'

According to the ADB report, if Asia continues on its recent growth trajectory, by 2050 its per capita income could rise six times in purchasing power parity terms to reach the present income levels of Europe. This rise in income would enable an additional 3 billion Asians to enjoy living standards of the affluent. The ADB report also states that with Asia on track to double its share of global GDP to 52% by 2050, the continent would regain the dominant economic position it held 300 years ago.

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