10 Countries With The Highest Industrial Outputs In The World

In 2016 china exported goods worth $2.342 trillion.  Editorial credit: Tommy Studio / Shutterstock.com
In 2016 china exported goods worth $2.342 trillion. Editorial credit: Tommy Studio / Shutterstock.com

In the past decade, the global economy has improved significantly. Compared to previous decades, developing countries are doing better and are contributing significantly to the global product output. The United States still holds the title of the world’s largest economy estimated at $18 trillion, China ranks second at $11 trillion, while Japan ranks third at $4.4 trillion. The three countries account for an estimated 45% of the global economy. The Chinese economy is rising at a speedy rate, and the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) forecasts that by 2029 the Chinese economy will surpass the US as the world’s largest economy. The rise of China's economy can be directly attributed to the increase in the country’s output.

Countries with the Highest Industrial Outputs


China has the world’s largest industrial output. In 2016 it is estimated that the country produced $4.566 trillion of industrial output. Strong factory output, stable retail sales, and an ever-growing export market have helped propel China meet its economic expectations. In the third quarter of 2017, the GDP grew by 6.8%. The industrial output grew by 6.6% in September 2017 compared to a year earlier. In 2016 china exported goods worth $2.342 trillion, it was only surpassed by the European Union which exported $2.659 trillion. The European Union ranked just behind China with an industrial output of $4.184 trillion.


Despite being the largest economy, the United States ranked behind China and the European Union in terms of industrial output. In 2016 the U.S industrial output totaled $3.602 trillion. In the same year, the U.S exported goods worth $1.620 trillion. The third quarter of 2016 witnessed a real output of $1.92 trillion the highest ever in a quarter since the Great Recession of 2008. The manufacturing sector employed more than $12.4 million in March 2017. The largest exports by the US were transportation equipment, chemicals, electronics and computers, and non-electrical machinery.


Japan ranks third in the global ranking, and Asia’s second state. A decade ago, Japan was the second largest economy until it was surpassed by China. In the recent past, Japan's economy economic might has been put into question particular after the nuclear meltdown in Fukushima and its demographic composition. In 2016 Japan’s total industrial output was $1.368 while its export revenue totaled $683.85. Japan has the largest public debt as a percentage of the GDP, a situation that is preventing the private investments in the country. The disparity in productivity in the various sectors of the economy continues to widen hindering the growth of the export-oriented economy.


Germany is Europe’s largest economy and the fourth largest in the world. It is also Europe’s largest industrial producer. In 2016 Germany’s industrial output totaled $1.050 trillion. Germany witnessed the highest surge in industrial output in August 2017, the largest since 2010. The growth in industrial output is expected to be solid throughout the third quarter of the year. The manufacturing output increased by 3.2% as industries churned out more consumer and intermediate goods. The automobile industry was the key driver behind the surgeon industrial output.


Since the beginning of the millennium, India has proved itself as an economic powerhouse. The country has emerged to be the world’s fastest economy according to the CSO and the IMF. The world’s seventh largest economy is expected to be among the three top economies in the next two decades. The Indian economy is expected to grow by 6.7 percent for the year 2017-18. By the end of 2018, the figure is expected to rise to 7.2 percent. The manufacturing industry is among strong pillars. In 2016 the country’s industrial production produced about $672 billion. Between April and June 2017 the economy grew by 5.7 percent year-on-year.

South Korea

Although not among the ten largest economies, South Korea’s industrial output continues to grow and ranks better some top economies. In 2016 the industrial output totaled $531 billion. The industrial output rose 2.7 percent year on year in August, bolstered by growth in the technological, manufacturing, and automobile industries. Asian’s fourth-largest economy has witnessed a surge in exports of chipsets and exports to China which grew by 13.5%. The consumer index grew by 1.8% as of October 2017 compared to the same time a year ago.

United Kingdom

The United Kingdom is Europe’s second largest industrial producer after Germany. In 2016 the UK produced $505 billion from its industries. Britain’s choice to leave the EU has left uncertainties in the economy as scholars and economists try to examine impacts of the move on the economy. Industrial output in the UK has maintained a 23-year boom streak leading to the growth of the wider economy. The automobile industry grew by 3pc while the mining and quarrying grew by 0.7pc in September. Industrial outputs in France and Italy totaled $478 and $442 billion respectively.

The World's Largest Economies

The United States is still the world’s largest economy with a nominal GDP of $18 trillion. The European Union ranks second with $16.8 trillion while China ranks third with $11.2 trillion. Japan and Germany rank third and fourth respectively with $4.4 and $3.5 trillion respectively. The UK, France, India, Italy, and Brazil complete the top ten in the order. Nigeria is Africa’s largest economy with a GDP of $569 Billion followed by South Africa at $350 billion. Tuvalu is the world’s smallest economy with a GDP of $38 million, Montserrat ($63m), Kiribati ($180 m), Nauru ($182m), and Marshall Islands ($209 m) complete the five smallest economies.

10 Countries With The Highest Industrial Outputs In The World

RankEconomyIndustrial output in 2016 (billions in USD)
1China 4,566
2European Union 4,184
3United States 3,602
4Japan 1,368
5Germany 1,050
6India 672
7South Korea 531
8United Kingdom 505
9France 478
10Italy 442

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