Today’s world is undergoing tremendous changes and shifts. Mainstream analysis marked the year 2019 with four obvious trends: Firstly, the slowdown of the global economy. According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) World Economic Outlook 2019, the global economy is projected to grow at 3.5 percent (which is 0.2 percentage point below last October’s projections) in 2019, and by only two percent for the developed economies and 4.2 percent for emerging and developing economies.
This is partly because of the negative effect of tariff increases and trade disputes between the US and China. Secondly, the rise of protectionism and unilateralism. Contrary to the fact that the world is becoming more interdependent as a result of economic globalisation, increasing protectionist measures such as tariffs and duty ratios have contributed to a huge drop in international trade. And as the global power, the US has withdrawn from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and other international economic and political mechanisms. Thirdly, the increased uncertainty and risks of geopolitics. Lastly, the development of new technology such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IOT) and Virtual Reality and their impact on Digitalisation and new industrialisation. These may change the way people work and live.