In his lecture, the Catalan economist spoke about the unprecedented collapse of world GDP and the unparalleled increase in public debt
Santiago Niño-Becerra, full professor in economic structure at Ramon Llull University, has revealed his theory on how the crisis sparked by the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic will accelerate the fall of the capitalist system, a phenomenon he estimates will happen at some point between 2050 and 2070. He shared his thoughts in his lecture last Wednesday as part of the Foros 2021 lecture series, organised by UIC Barcelona School of Architecture.
Under the title, “Looking ahead to 2060”, the Catalan economist highlighted how the advent of the pandemic interrupted the economic trend that has been developing globally over the past 50 years. He added that we would have to look back to the agricultural crises of the late 18th century to find a similar fall in GDP on such a global scale.
According to Santiago Niño-Becerra, the decline in world GDP has been accompanied by a significant increase in public debt, “surpassing post-World War II levels.” He also mentioned the great impact the pandemic is having on world trade due to travel limitations imposed by COVID-19 mitigation measures, as another concerning indicator.
He said that under such circumstances, productivity will become a determining indicator in the future and that, in Spain’s case, the data are not as promising as those from countries such as Germany or France. The economist predicts that in a matter of 60 years, global levels of inequality will rise and “capital will be concentrated across a handful of corporations”.
He ended his lecture by explaining how the economic forecast, both globally and in Spain, “is not looking good”, and that “we will have to become experts in managing scarce resources”.
Under the title “Expectations”, Foros 2021 opens the floor to discussions on the reconstruction projects that have emerged as a result of the COVID-19 crisis, across all areas of society, with a particular focus on architecture and urban planning.