I have met many people who have succeeded in life without learning higher level math. While it is true that many people with other talents and skills can do well in life without math, a society cannot reach high levels of economic prosperity without people who understand math.
Any country that does not invest in math education of its own citizens today, will eventually be paying the citizens of other countries to do the work that math requires.
Dr. Linda Bailey-McWeeney is the Executive Director of Reggae Math Foundation, an economist, and an educator. She has been an Assistant Professor at Baruch College, City University of New York and an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Economics at College of Staten Island, City University of New York, and Wagner College. She has a Ph.D. in Economics from Michigan State University.