We have already witnessed global transformation due to geopolitical conflicts, pandemics, global recession and shifts within nations and at the international level. That means the world in 2024 will be different from the world in 2023, but few problems will proceed to hurt the world even in 2024.
Economic turbulence in 2024.
First, economic markets will remain volatile and dictated by the geopolitical conflicts of the world. The modern world has endured the first economic volatility during the time of the pandemic, which was complicated by political instability and the boom of populism in 2021. Lastly, the shocks of the Russo-Ukraine war sent the prices of oil skyrocketing. The peril of a global economic recession is still hovering across the world due to the Hamas-Israel war. Still, there is the prospect of another recession which will be triggered by the oil crisis. The global economy is likely to subvert in the coming year according to 61 percent of respondents in the World Forum’s latest chief economist’s outlook. Fears of global recession are dropping but anxiety about China’s economy is rising, which recently dipped into deflation.
Threat of derailment of democracy in the 2024 US elections
Uncertainty looms large over the 2024 US presidential election. Donald Trump vowed to back down from NATO if he was re-elected. Furthermore, if Trump ascends to the throne, he will make a significant shift in the foreign policy of America. The divide inside America will exuberate, the tension between the US and China will reach the point of no return and democratic norms will be further eroded. Trump’s protectionist approach will prove deleterious for the Laissez-faire economy.
The increasing role of AI
The role of artificial intelligence is increasing in human life as it plays a role in economics, health and in every arena of life. Besides its benefits, the darker side of AI is alarming as it is even more annihilating than atomic weapons. A recent article was written by famous diplomat Henry Kissinger on Foreign Affairs in which he explained the potential threats posed by AI to the human race. He and his co-author demanded the regulation of AI. According to the theme of the article, AI is a bigger curse than nuclear weapons.
Climate change is another challenge for the universe, as in 2023, the world has endured scorching heat in different parts of the world. Even in European countries, heatwaves are rampant, while global southern countries have experienced the aggression of frightening deluges. At COP -28 again, the international community is making some pledges, but the practical manifestation of the pledges is far away. According to the United Nations Framework Conventions on Climate Change finance analysis, developing countries need 6 trillion US dollars by 2030 to deal with climate change. While the UN Secretary-General had already reverberated the alarm during the Glasgow summit that we were in an emergency.
Geopolitically fraught environment
The Geopolitical environment will remain under stress as the liberal institutions are already fractured, and the international system is incapacitated to deal with the modern troubles of the world. A recent economist’s report named World 2024 Ahead, has dubbed the world, in these words, “multipolar disorder. “As the global landscape is changing due to the rise of authoritarian forces, an era of economic integration is about moribund. Furthermore, according to the different theories of international relations, the notion is already tolerable that a unipolar world is more sustainable and stable in comparison to a multipolar world. This multipolarity will exacerbate polarization on the globe and polarization will eventually eat up the ideas of human welfare and economic integration. As in the phase of political polarization, economic integration will not survive. Moreover, economic volatility will flourish.
Expanding clout of Middle powers
The middle powers are the countries that are important strategically and economically. In the contemporary world, the role of middle-power countries like India, KSA, Turkey and UAE is expanding rapidly. These are the countries who are reaping benefits from both sides, including eastern and western global hegemon. Turkey’s partnership in the last three years has been increasing rapidly with Russia, while on the other hand, it is an important member of NATO. In 2022, Turkey even brokered a deal between Russia and Ukraine. Moreover, India, on one side, is an important strategic partner of the US for the containment of China, while on the other side, India continues its import of oil from Russia, despite the Western strategy of economic blitzkrieg against Russia. Similarly, KSA is intensifying its trade activities with China while also demanding security and defense grants from America. So, in 2024 the middle powers’ role in international decision-making will remain important.
So the world will remain polarized even In 2024 rather challenges in the upcoming year will be formidable. The threat of War between global hegemons will still loom large over the world as the Taiwan dispute and Indo-Pacific will remain the flash point. Furthermore, economic Volatility with the climate miseries posed a deleterious impact on the globe.
Sanan Hassan Lashari is a student of international relations at BZU Multan. He is keen observer of events happening at global level and love to give his opinions on them with the application of international relations theories.