Comparison of India's and China's Economy

Both China and India have recently seen new highs in the global economic charts due to their rapid progress in various sectors. Besides being huge in size, the two countries are similar in many other respects. They are both among the most diverse nations in the world and both the economies are considerably influenced by a combination of political, social, historical and other factors. Both the nations are extremely rich in their heritage and have long glorious past history.

But in spite of being so similar in certain aspects, some pronounced economic differences would surface upon a closer look at the two economies. For example, when the exchange rates are compared, China occupies the third position in the world while India is in the twelfth position. The estimated per capita GDP of India is $1016, which is far behind China’s at $6,100. Average GDP of India is $1.209 trillion with respect to China’s at $7.8 trillion.

There are several factors that have given China an advantageous position with respect to India, economically. Agriculture being the primary sector in both the countries, China is technologically much advanced compared to India traditional methods of cultivation. India staggers behind at least 10 years compared to China in adopting the open market economic policies and globalisation. China is also way ahead as far as its developed infrastructure is considered. It has better amenities in areas such as manpower and labour development, health care facilities, transport and communication, water management, irrigational facilities, civic amenities and so on.

Data from various sources confirm that China has $1 trillion in personal savings and has a savings rate of almost 50%, whereas India has a savings rate of merely 26%. While assessing the lifestyle of the people of both the nations, it has been found out that about 300 million or 23% of the entire Chinese population fall into the category of middle class segment and 17% live on $1 a day. India has about 150-200 million people in the middle class segment and 24% of the population live below the poverty line. Thus both the countries need to work still harder, bringing in more widespread reforms to realize their future dreams.

China today boasts of forty richest people with a collective worth of $26 billion but India surpasses China with its four richest people worth more than China’s forty richest people put together.

India’s mixed economy compared to China’s socialist economy has always faced widespread comparison and criticism and the debate shall continue to intrigue economists all over the world in the times to come.