Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Book Review: Breakout Nations

Very few books successfully correlate history and politics with the economic progress of a nation in a specific time period and this book is one of them. It not only explores few countries but more than a dozen of them in search of a breakout nation. GDP, growth rate and per capita income are the common criteria used along with country specific information while concluding if a nation continues to be a breakout nation or falls off the list.

Author of this book Ruchir Sharma, who also wears hats of an investor and a traveler, puts the subject matter in a logical sequence and in a simple, crisp language which can be easily read and appreciated by non-economic background readers as well. He provides deeper insights into many nations on why they had a spectacular growth during the last decade and why the commodity driven nations would find their growth rates cooling down in the coming decade. He observes and explains why South Korea was able to build global brands and its neighbor Taiwan was not so successful in that despite both countries having similar background and greater influence (under colonial rule) from Japan. He also shows why there is room for growth only in the top in Russia and how USA can be a come-back nation again.

Chapter titles, sub-headings, captions for accompanying photographs are very catchy and mostly borrowed from common wisdom, famous sayings make the book very interesting read.