Prosperity linked to economic freedom

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THE WORLD ECONOMY. GDP* per capita. The Heritage Foundation. Source: 2008 Index of Economic Freedom. Prosperity linked to economic freedom.


Prosperity linked to economic freedom The freer a nation’s economy, the higher its standard of living. That’s the general rule, according to the 2008 Index of Economic Freedom. The 14th annual index, published by The Heritage Foundation and The Wall Street Journal, uses 10 categories to assess the degree of economic freedom in 157 nations. The U.S. rating slipped slightly, largely because of high taxes and increased government spending. In all, the economies of 30 countries scored 70 or higher (“mostly free” to “free”) out of a possible 100, while 24 scored below 50 (“repressed”). In the chart below, 17 nations are plotted. GDP* per capita


MORE FREE Mostly Moderately Mostly Unfree Free Free




United States: Index score: 80.6, GDP per capita: $41,890

Hong Ireland Kong

United Kingdom $30,000



Singapore New Zealand

Trend line for 157 nations $15,000


Lithuania Mexico

Vietnam China Syria Colombia Burma India 30








For details on the economic freedom of 157 nations, go to * Gross Domestic Product Source: 2008 Index of Economic Freedom

The Heritage Foundation

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