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    Changing World

    The following is the text of a speech given at the Davos about the
    changing economic and political landscape heading in the 21st
    century.

    Re: Beyond Davos: Demise of the Hub-and-Spokes World Economy:
    The 21st Century Great Global Economy Paradigm Shift

    The annual mela in Davos, Switzerland, begins today and is being
    held under the theme "The Shifting Power Equation." However, as
    Prof Jean-Pierre Lehmann from IMD Lausanne points out, this in fact
    is the "Demise of the Hub-and-Spokes World Economy" via "The 21st
    Century Great Global Economy Paradigm Shift." With multiple
    sessions on climate chaos - which some in the gathered crowd are
    cynically branding as climate collapse - this may be one of the
    "greenest" gatherings of the throng ever. "Better late than never!" as
    one social entrepreneur put it. Prof Lehmann writes:

    Dear DK and Colleagues

    Emirates Airlines runs daily non-stop flights from Shanghai and
    Beijing to Dubai. Soon it will be inaugurating a non-stop flight
    between Dubai and Sao Paulo. It will then be possible for Brazilian
    and Chinese business executives (and others including government
    officials, students, tourists and honeymooners) to fly between their
    two countries without the hitherto obligatory stop-over in either
    Frankfurt (Europe) or Los Angeles (US). Regular direct flights from
    Dhaka, Karachi, Mumbai and Colombo to Dubai also secure the
    dynamic and ever stronger link between the economies of the Gulf
    and the economies of the Indian Sub-Continent. Arab businessmen
    will be flying to all these destinations as an ever increasing flow of
    goods, capital and ideas link the four regions: Greater China, South
    Asia, South America and the Middle East.

    The economic ties and business networks across Asia are being
    developed and discussed in the recently inaugurated Indian-Arab and
    Chinese-Arab CEO annual summits convened by the UAE based
    forum Moutamarat. This reflects, among other things, the fact that
    China, India and the states of the Gulf Cooperation Council are the
    three fastest growing world economies. The recent increasingly
    growing business ties between and across the three Asian regions
    (West, South and East) have been described as the New Silk Road.

    While the trans-Asian connection - which increasingly also
    encompasses Central Asia within its expanding orbit - is the most
    important economic story of the first decade of the 21st century, it is
    by no means the only one. In October 2006, as ATCA observed,
    Beijing hosted the first China-Africa Summit, a very grand affair that
    brought to the Chinese capital over 50 African heads of state. China
    is by far Africa's fastest growing trade and investment partner; with
    India also increasingly active, this trend has been described in a
    publication by Harry Broadman of the World Bank as "Africa's Silk
    Road: China and India's New Economic Frontier." At a policy level,
    the new relationship between the three continents of the "developing
    world", Africa, Asia and Latin America, was reflected in the
    establishment of the G-20 during the CancĂșn WTO ministerial
    meeting in September 2003; led by Brazil, India, China and South
    Africa, the G-20 is the first developing world trade alliance to counter
    the hitherto overbearing authority of the "Quad" (US, EU, Japan and
    Canada).

    All these trends are indicative of the terminal demise of the 20th
    century global hub-and-spokes business paradigm, whereby the
    OECD (Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development)
    countries represented the hub and the different parts of the
    developing world the spokes. T
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