Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Economic Freedom Worldwide

Click to Enlarge. From The Heritage Foundation

The Heritage Foundation has released their annual Index of Economic Freedom.

The list rates various freedoms including business freedom, trade freedom, monetary freedom, freedom from government, fiscal freedom, property rights, investment freedom, financial freedom, freedom from corruption, and labor freedom.

The top ten countries are (Full list):
  • Hong Kong
  • Singapore
  • Australia
  • United States
  • New Zealand
  • United Kingdom
  • Ireland
  • Luxembourg
  • Switzerland
  • Canada

The top seven all have been strongly culturally influenced by England and the English ideals of personal and economic freedoms. Depending on one's definition the top seven (and Canada) can all be considered part of the Anglosphere.

A secondary break down has Hong Kong and Singapore as Asian tigers. Japan and South Korea are somewhat distant from the top ten but no lower than number 36.

Switzerland has always been classical market liberals along with being neutral. It has recently rejected European Union demands to be less economically free. Luxembourg has liberal banking and investment laws and the open trade that comes with being a member of the European Union.

The bottom fifteen countries include Venezuela, Iran, Zimbabwe, Libya, Cuba, and North Korea. The bottom part of the list coincides with Thomas Barnett's Gap. These countries are either African, Islamic, Communist/Thug Communist, or a combination of the variables.

The states which repress freedoms like economics and personal ones ("the freer the market the freer the people") are the more troublesome countries in the world. These governments suppress their own people and other countries which try to improve themselves. Sometimes these oppressive groups will unite to combat the economically free, globalized countries.


Sean Gillies said...

Considering the foundation's political agenda, I'm surprised Heritage didn't put France last. Every good conservative knows the French have no word for "entrepreneur".

Catholicgauze said...

Actually Entrepreneur comes from Old French. :)

Dan tdaxp said...

I surprised China and Vietnam rank so low -- 119 and 138, respectively.

(Not at all surprised by the bottom eight: Iran, Congo, Turkmenistan, Burma, Zimbabwe, Libya, Cuba, and North Korea)

Anonymous said...

For an interactive analysis of the Index of Economic Freedom, check out the dataset for InfoScope.

Catholicgauze said...


msieurico said...

I'm surprized that they put French Guyana before France since it is the same country, with the same laws and part of the EU both ...