The coming global boom
by Phil Burgess, Unabridged from the Rocky Mountain News, March 15, 1990
The idea is spreading that we are on the edge of another major global expansion. This is the view of a minority, but it’s a growing minority.
It includes highly respected economists, business leaders and other observers who refuse to get mired in short-term debates about when the next recession will come.
Victor Kiam, the Remington Shaver man, said it best when asked recently whether we were on the brink of a recession.
Kiam responded: “I don’t know. I really don’t care. If we do have one, it will end in six or 12 or 18 months. The important thing is the outlook for the next 10 years. We should be thinking about what will happen in this decade and beyond.”
I agree. Let’s look at the next 10 years. Our global boom scenario goes like this. Economic expansion – new jobs, increasing wealth and productivity gains – will be driven by what we call the Triple T’s, the Triple I’s and the Triple E’s. This Is the Triple TIE scenario for economic expansion.
New telecommunications technology will be used to foster telecommuting and enhance traffic management. Increasing per-capita wealth in Europe and the Pacific Rim will lead to an unprecedented expansion of tourism around the globe – and the U.S. remains the destination of choice for most foreigners.
The Triple I’s are investment capital, immigration and international commerce. Investment capital will expand tremendously as America’s 26-44 year old baby boom generation moves into their high-earning and high-saving years.
Some respected economists expect our national savings rate to double to the nine or 10% range by the 1996-97 period, with the U.S. reemerging as the world’s leading capital exporter.
The new wave of Latino and Asian immigrants will help the U.S. lessen the impact of labor shortages resulting from baby bust generation. The new immigrants bring energy, connections and know-how to a ready market.
Global expansion is being fueled by international commerce and especially new institutional arrangements emerging in Europe, Asia and North America. These will help expand trade and Investment.
The Triple E’s are environmental clean up, entertainment and education. Environmental clean up is high on the agenda of every nation as we enter the 1990s – and U.S. engineering and consulting companies are well-positioned with the technology and know-how to get the job done.
The demand for made-in-the-U.S. television programs, movies, CATV and music will explode overseas as increasing wealth expands leisure time and more foreign markets open up to these U.S. products. The demand for education is booming as knowledge expands.
That’s the boom scenario.