The World GGP (Gross Global Product) grew by a strong 4.3% in 2005. While this rate would merely be considered robust today, it is a rate unheard of before the mid-20th century. In fact, prior to the 16th century, 4.3% growth was what the world economy might have seen in an entire century, rather than just a single year.
Refer to how Economic Growth is Exponential and Accelerating for a detailed study.
However, this growth, which added $1.8 trillion to the now $44 trillion world economy, was not evenly distributed at all. In fact, more than one third of the $1.8 trillion was generated in just the US and China. A breakdown of the wealth creation, by country (in direct currency conversion, not purchase power parity (PPP)) :
United States : 25.0%
EU (a collection of 24 separate countries) : 12.6%
China : 9.5%
Japan : 5.8%
India : 3.0%
Russia : 2.5%
Rest of World : 41.6%
A large economy with a slow growth rate, like that of the EU, produces a similar portion of the pie as a small economy with a high growth rate, like that of China. This also means that India and China will soon be contributing a much larger percentage of the pie, as their currencies appreciate through increased exports.
In viewing historical World GDP Growth from The Economist, we can not only see that there has not been a year without growth since 1980, but that the difference between nominal and PPP growth rates have been diverging due to India and China. Continued growth will result in currency appreciation for both (China is already forcibly keeping its currency undervalued), and will bring the light-blue nominal line up to the level of the darker PPP line. The awakening of India and China to supercharge the global economy is effectively the single biggest event of the last 15 years.
This could push the world GGP growth trendline over 5% by 2020, and would be consistent with the expected continued acceleration of the world's economy in the 21st century.