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India's GDP is expected to grow by 8.5 percent this year, and could grow even faster. Chetan Ahya and Tanvee Gupta of Morgan Stanley, an investment bank, predict that India's growth will start to outpace China's within three to five years. China will rumble along at 8 percent rather than double digits; India will rack up successive years of 9 percent to 10 percent. For the next 20 to 25 years, India will grow faster than any other large country, they expect. Other long-range forecasters paint a similar picture.
Several factors weigh in India's favor. The first is demography. Indians are young. An ageing world needs workers; a young country has workers. Previous Asian booms have been powered by a surge in the working-age population. Now it is India's turn. The proportion of Indians aged under 15 or over 64 has declined from 69 percent in 1995 to 56 percent this year, says the UN. India's working-age population will increase by 136 million by 2020; China's will grow by a mere 23 million, says Morgan Stanley.
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