There is always some amount of apartheid when it comes to countries, followed at the global level.
I’m talking about a country’s quantum of development. So you have aphorisms like “Developed country” and “Developing Country”, “Third World Nations” and “Backward Economies” being used causally.

What defines these clichés? Success? How do you measure that? If it was a few decades ago, it would have been the expansionist criteria that would have determined whether a country is successful or not based on how many other countries around it and all over the world it has conquered, won, annexed and in general, rules over. So you had the British and the Spanish, the French and the Portuguese being considered rulers of the world owing to the colonies that they held. I don’t want to go deeper to an era when we had kings and emperors who used all sorts of means to wage wars against other kingdoms and expanded their kingdoms. From Greece to Egypt to Indian kingdoms of yore and the Chinese warlords, history is replete with examples of regimes that counted success based on the size of the kingdom, the size of the armed forces including the animals and the fleets at sea, and the wealth possessed by the kings. A country was considered rich and prosperous when its subjects lived a lavish life as did the king in his stately palaces, adorned with jewels and the best the world at that time would offer as luxury. Or, from the world of fiction, the Iron Fleet from Game of Thrones.

Things are a tad different today. Wars have begun to be looked down upon and expansionist agendas are frowned upon by sophisticated countries. For the past century or so, the world has definitely seen major wars, including the world wars, why many nations are still at war with each other- either overtly or covertly, but the focus now has been on economic development. And ever since a country’s wealth began to be measured through its Gross Domestic Product (GDP), we have seen a huge change in perception.

What is GDP?

It is the measure of the total monetary value of the country’s finished goods and services (mostly for sale in the market) in a specified time and is considered as a comprehensive scorecard of a nation’s economic wellbeing and health. It is calculated by using the formula

GDP = Consumption + Investment + Government Spending + Net Exports


GDP = C + I + G + NX


consumption (C) represents private-consumption expenditures by households and non-profit organizations,

investment (I) refers to business expenditures by businesses and home purchases by households,

government spending (G) denotes expenditures on goods and services by the government, and

net exports (NX) represents a nation’s exports minus its imports.


GDP of a country is routinely debated in the media, because it shows the state of the nation’s economy. Single digit or double digit is oftentimes the point of contention, meaning that a GDP forecast of anywhere above the forecasted % is considered healthy. Many countries outperform such forecasts while still many underperform on these standards. A lot of the health of the economy of a country depends on the policies implemented by the country’s ruling party’s ideology, expertise and the people’s mandate. Note, a country’s GDP is also calculated and published by international bodies like the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) or the country’s Central Banks and Economic Forums. Read more