Most developing countries are following the same development path – aping the West in terms of urbanisation, increased use of fossil fuels, technology and increased consumerism. This is understandable – after all the West has enjoyed the trappings of ‘the good life’ for many years and has done a good job of ‘selling the ideal’ to the East. However the West is bundling in obesity, diabetes, heart disease, depression, pollution, climate change and a whole range of other negative factors.

Hopefully some of the Eastern countries – with their traditional approach to life which includes a major spiritual (rather than religious) component – might find a ‘third way’ which imposes some controls on unbridled consumerism and helps teach the West that there are routes to ‘development’ which do not ‘throw the baby out with the bathwater’.