A solid economy is one of the most important things to have a stable and thriving country and a vital characteristic of the richest countries in the world.
The United States has traditionally been the economic powerhouse of the world, but that situation is changing. Can new superpowers such as China overhaul the US, and if so, how soon can they do it?
There are various ways to measure wealth, but read on for this Billionaires roundup of the top ten richest countries in the world.
10. Hong Kong
Although Hong Kong acts like a country and considers itself to be a country, it is actually a Special Administrative Region and part of China.
Hong Kong acted as a link between China and the rest of the world from the 1970s and became a regional economic power, but it was when the British handed Hong Kong over to China in 1997 that the city really started to come into its own. Now one of the richest ‘countries’ in the world, Hong Kong is home to seven million people, with one of the densest populations of anywhere on the planet.
On the Global Cities Index Hong Kong is ranked in fifth place after New York City, London, Tokyo and Paris, while Hong Kong has also been named the world’s third most important financial centre. According to the latest World Economic Outlook Database, Hong Kong’s GDP based on purchasing power parity per capita stands close to $53,000 earning it a place in this Billionaires top ten.
9. United States of America
The US is no longer the world’s dominant economic powerhouse and has not been for some time.
In fact, the country’s purchasing power parity per capita is only just ahead of Hong Kong’s, perhaps highlighting the severe inequality which the US is still struggling to get to grips with in the 21st century. By some measures the US still has the world’s largest economy, with data suggesting the country has $17.5 trillion in purchasing power, but this is undoubtedly (at least in part) due to the sheer size of the nation and its massive population.
Until the US can switch to a greener, more high-tech economy it is going to struggle to compete with ambitious upstarts who are all aiming to become one of the richest countries in the world. It is not all bad news for the US though. The nation still has a massive military that is the envy of every country on the planet, even if its economy is no longer as dominant as it once was.
Switzerland is known all over the globe for being a haven for wealth, and that has certainly played a key role in the nation being one of the richest countries in the world.
The Swiss economy is famed for its stability and even the Eurozone crisis, which has crippled a number of Europe’s weaker economies, was not able to have a large impact on Switzerland. Perhaps this is as Switzerland elected not to become a member of the European Union, a decision that has certainly paid off for residents of the country. However, the cost of living is very high in Switzerland compared to most of Europe as a result.
Banking is one of the key industries in Switzerland, while the country is also globally renowned for making some of the best cheeses, watches and chocolate on the planet. The latest World Economic Outlook Database has Switzerland’s purchasing power parity per capita at around $54,000 nudging it just ahead of the US and Hong Kong to take eighth place.
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