LONDON: UK, boosted by the inclusion of sex and drugs in national accounts, set to overtake France to become the world’s fifth largest economy behind the US, China, Japan and Germany.
UK’s gross domestic product amounted to $2.828 trillion in 2014, brushing past France’s $2.827 trillion even as the gap is within the margin of error. UK figures have been revised to include earnings from drugs and prostitution, the same is not true for France.
Washington based International Monetary Fund predicts UK’s GDP will remain slightly smaller than France’s through at least 2017, with an estimate of $2.706 trillion for this year, versus $2.885 trillion for France and $3.664 trillion for Germany.
Further the European Commission forecasts UK’s economy will expand more than twice as fast as the euro region’s next year at a pace of 2.7 percent. While France and Germany have both suffered output contractions this year, in UK joblessness fell in the third quarter to the lowest level since 2008 amid robust household spending.
Revisions to China’s GDP mean that it is now forecast to overtake the US in 2025 compared to 2028 in a ranking published last year. Projections published in October by the IMF showed that China’s economy this year overtook the US based on purchasing power parity, which adjusts for price differences between nations.