Did you know that Salekhard, Russia—a tundra-locked industrial town in the country's extreme north—is fast becoming the center of the economic universe? At least according to one very technical measure provided by McKinsey & Company.
According to the chart above, made by the consultancy's research branch, the "world's center of economic gravity"—the point on the map where the weighted GDPs of world's countries are equal—fell on the Russian tundra in 2010 after moving eastward from the North Atlantic since 1950. While, as The Economist points out, nations' GDPs are weighted from their geographic centers, skewing the numbers slightly, the story it tells is obvious and has little to do with Russia.
The shift eastward— projected to jump even further southeast by 2025— has everything to do with the economic rise of China (and to a slightly lesser extent India). "By far the most rapid shift in the world's economic center of gravity happened between 2000 and 2010," the McKinsey authors write. Speaking directly to the sort of multinational corporations McKinsey consults for, the write: "We expect this trend to continue, so executives and policy makers must be prepared to respond."