In this edition of U talk our guest is answering your questions on new ways of measuring wealth.
“Hi, I’m Gonçalo from Lisbon. This is my question: GDP has been used to measure the wealth of a country, but this indicator does not take into account essential factors, such as well-being or sustainable development. Aren’t there other ways of measuring development?”
Anna Rossbach, member of the European Parliament: “For me, a society is about more than just money. I think most of the big countries nowadays realise that. That is why the European Parliament has now adopted a basic document on setting up other measurements. GDP was set up in the 1930s and was never meant to be a global measurement.
“There are many countries in the world where people are living in very poor conditions, without things like electricity and clean water supplies, but if you look at the country’s GDP, they are not that poor. This can be because the country has a lot of gold for instance, or maybe other kinds of precious materials or resources. But the wealth does not go to the citizens.
“I think it is extremely important to have measurements other than just seeing what comes in money-wise. We should look at the living conditions of the normal citizens. Do they have a stable life with all the basics? What can and can’t they buy with the money they have? So the idea is not to replace GDP but to make additions to GDP.”