Emerging markets are countries that are restructuring their economies along market-oriented lines and offer a wealth of opportunities in trade, technology transfers, and foreign direct investment. According to the World Bank, the five biggest emerging markets are China, India, Indonesia, Brazil and Russia. Other countries that are also considered as emerging markets include Mexico, Argentina, South Africa, Poland, Turkey, and South Korea. Emerging markets stand out due to four major characteristics. First, they are regional economic powerhouses with large populations, large resource bases, and large markets. Second, they are transitional societies that are undertaking domestic economic and political reforms. Third, they are the world's fastest growing economies, contributing to a great deal of the world's explosive growth of trade. Fourth, they are critical participants in the world's major political, economic, and social affairs.