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Top 10 Richest Countries In The World (2024 Update)

The richest countries in the world are no longer as shocking as they were two decades ago. These are the nations that draw a large number of businesses due to their low tax rates and are frequently regarded as global financial hubs. The vast majority of nations will never be able to match the high per capital earnings that are produced by this money and small populations.

According to economists, nations with the highest gross domestic output per capital are also the richest in the world. To put it plainly, the current standard approach for determining a nation’s wealth is to take the entire number of products produced within the country and divide it by the population.

List Of Top 10 Richest Countries In The World 2024

1. Luxembourg

Luxembourg is worth visiting for its cuisine delicacies, cultural festivals, and stunning scenery. Alternatively, you might just open an offshore account with one of its banks and leave the nation forever. It would be a shame to do otherwise because this country of around 670,000 people, located in the center of Europe, has a lot to offer both visitors and residents. Luxembourg’s citizens enjoy the highest standard of life in the Eurozone because a significant portion of their money is used to provide them with better housing, healthcare, and education. Luxembourg’s economy may not have been significantly impacted by the global financial crisis or the EU and OECD’s push to abolish banking secrecy, but the corona virus outbreak resulted in the closure of numerous firms and the loss of jobs for many employees. Nevertheless, the nation has fared better throughout the pandemic than the majority of its neighbors in Europe; in 2021, growth in the economy exceeded 7%, having recovered from a growth of -0.9% in 2020. Regretfully, the recovery was short-lived as the economy only increased by 1.3% in 2022 and even shrank by 1% in 2023 (though growth is still expected to be 1.2% this year) as a result of high interest rates, the conflict in Ukraine, and a general worsening of the economic conditions in the Eurozone.

2. Macao SAR

Though there were some hiccups along the way, a few years ago, many were wagering that Asia’s Las Vegas was soon to overtake all other countries in terms of wealth. After the gambling sector was liberalized in 2001 in this former Portuguese Empire territory, the People’s Republic of China’s special administrative region has witnessed an incredible increase in riches. Nestled just south of Hong Kong, this little peninsula became a money-making engine with over 40 casinos spanning a region of around 30 square kilometers and a population of about 700,000. That was, that is, until the machine began to lose money instead of making it. Travel throughout the world ceased when Covid hit, and Macao briefly dropped out of the list of the ten richest countries. Macao has since resumed operations as —and then some. In 2019, its per capital purchasing power was approximately $125,000, and it is currently even higher.

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3. Ireland

The Republic of Ireland, a country of 5.3 million people, was among the most severely affected by the 2008–2009 financial crisis. After implementing politically challenging reforms such as drastically reducing public sector wages and reorganizing the banking sector, the island nation was able to improve its employment rates, restore its fiscal stability, and witness exponential growth in its per capital GDP. But context matters. Being one of the biggest corporate tax havens in the world, Ireland helps multinational corporations significantly more than the typical Irish person. Several major US companies, including Apple, Google, Microsoft, Meta, and Pfizer, relocated their fiscal domicile to Ireland in the middle of the 2010s in order to take advantage of the country’s 12.5% corporate tax rate, which is among the lowest in the industrialized world. These multinational corporations were responsible for about half of the value added to the Irish economy in 2023. Ireland would lose its competitive advantage if it adopted the 15% minimum corporate tax rate that the OECD has recommended and that many other nations have already put into place.

4. Singapore

The richest person in Singapore is an American, Eduardo Saverin, co-founder of Facebook, who left the United States in 2011 with 53 million shares of the firm and moved there permanently. His assets are estimated to be worth $16 billion. Saverin, like many other millionaires and billionaires, did not pick Singapore merely because of its natural wonders or urban attractions: Singapore is a wealthy fiscal haven with tax-free profits and capital gains. However, how did Singapore come to draw in so many wealthy people? Half of the people living in the city-state were illiterate in 1965, the year it gained its independence. Singapore, which has almost no natural resources, has become one of the world’s most business-friendly destinations by hard work and astute policies. Currently, 98% of Singapore’s adult population is literate, and the country is a booming center for trade, manufacturing, and finance.

5. Qatar

Oil prices have generally decreased since the middle of the 2010s, except the recent rebound. A Qatari citizen’s per capital GDP was above $143,222 in 2014; a year later, it sharply declined and stayed below $100,000 for the following five years. That amount has, however, progressively increased, rising by roughly $10,000 annually. Even then, Qatar’s population of only 3 million people and its enormous oil, gas, and petrochemical reserves allow this marvel of modern architecture, opulent shopping centers, and exquisite food to maintain its position as the richest country in the world for 20 years. All wealthy nations do not, however, exist without issues. In the early months of the epidemic, Covid-19 spread quickly among low-income migrant laborers living in cramped quarters, leading to one of the highest percentages of positive cases in the region, despite the fact that only 12% of the population is Qatari. Then, when energy costs declined, so did revenues for the public and private sectors. Qatar’s export-driven economy was negatively impacted by the interruption of international trade resulting from the conflict in Ukraine.

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6. United Arab Emirates

Pearl commerce, fishing, and agriculture used to be this Persian Gulf nation’s three main economic sectors. Everything changed in the 1950s when oil was discovered. The extremely cosmopolitan populace of the United Arab Emirates now enjoys significant riches. Just 20% of the population is native to the nation; workers are drawn here from all over the world by tax-free earnings and year-round sunlight, while traditional Islamic architecture coexists with opulent retail malls. Additionally, the economy of the UAE is diversifying more and more. Major industries outside of the hydrocarbon industry that has historically dominated the economy are tourism, construction, trade, and banking. This is not to argue that the pandemic and the ensuing decline in oil prices did not have an influence on the United Arab Emirates; quite the contrary. As unbelievable as it may sound, the United Arab Emirates momentarily disappeared from the IMF’s list of the world’s richest nations for the first time in many years. However, fossil fuels are still in vogue: the United Arab Emirates promptly reclaimed its traditional ranking among the world’s top 10 richest nations as soon as energy prices began to rise.

7. Switzerland

Among the notable inventions that Switzerland is known for are velcro, LSD, computer mice, immersion blenders, bobsleighs, white chocolate, and Swiss Army knives. This 8.8 million-person nation owes a large portion of its riches to banking and insurance services, travel, pharmaceutical items, jewelry, precious metals, precision instruments (like watches), and machinery (including computers and medical equipment). According to Credit Suisse’s 2023 Global Wealth Report, Switzerland topped the list with an astounding $685,230 in mean average wealth per adult. Moreover, around one in six adults has assets valued at more than $1 million. Is it any wonder that Switzerland boasts the world’s highest density of millionaires? Is the Swiss economy immune to economic hardship, though? Due to the nation’s substantial reliance on gas and oil imports from Russia, the war in Ukraine not only caused supply chain interruptions and a spike in energy costs, but it also had a substantial effect on the economy. Moreover, Credit Suisse came dangerously close to collapse in 2022 before being saved by the government and its longstanding rival, UBS Group. The collapse of Credit Suisse has rocked the nation and tarnished Switzerland’s standing as a safe and dependable hub for international finance.

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8. San Marino

Little San Marino is the fifth-smallest country on the map and the oldest republic in Europe. Despite having just 34,000 residents, it has some of the richest populations worldwide. The extremely low income tax rate—roughly one-third of the EU average—helps. However, San Marino is making efforts to align its fiscal rules and regulations with both international standards and those of the European Union (EU). The little country demonstrated incredible fortitude both during and after the epidemic in the face of severe financial constraints and the energy crisis, with its manufacturing and tourism sectors seeing particularly robust growth.

9. United States

At least initially, the pandemic’s socioeconomic effects, which increased income and spending, and the decline in energy prices caused petroleum-based economies like Brunei to drop out of the top 10 altogether and economies like Qatar, Norway, and the United Arab Emirates to move down several ranks. Nevertheless, the nation has since been able to sustain the pace and hold its position at the top of the list. In the beginning of 2020, the US experienced the smallest recession on record, lasting just two months, and its economy is currently flourishing. Although the IMF revised up its estimates for US economic growth in 2024 to 2.7% (+0.6%), which is 0.6% higher than what it had predicted only a few months prior, the Fund still believes that US performance will be “a major driver of global growth” this year.

10. Norway

Norway has relied heavily on oil as its economic engine since the late 1960s, when significant offshore reserves were discovered. Being the largest producer of petroleum in Western Europe, the nation has profited from rising prices for many years. Until it didn’t: the krone plummeted as a result of the global pandemic that struck at the start of 2020, which also caused a plunge in prices. The GDP of Norway decreased by 6.3% in the second quarter of that year, marking the largest loss in fifty years and maybe the largest since World War Two. Does that imply that Norwegians’ level of wealth decreased dramatically from before the pandemic? Without a doubt. Following the initial shock, the economy progressively recovered and reduced its losses. Furthermore, Norwegians may always rely on their $1.4 trillion sovereign wealth fund, the largest in the world, for assistance with any unforeseen economic issues. Furthermore, Norway’s high per capital GDP estimates represent the ordinary person’s economic well-being fairly well, in contrast to many other wealthy countries. The nation has one of the narrowest disparities in income inequality globally.

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