North America has over 600 million people living in 23 sovereign states and 15 independent territories. Countries of Central America are often considered to be part of North America. Here is a rundown of the wealthiest countries in North America, ranked according to their GDP (PPP) per capita.
The Richest Countries in North America
10. Costa Rica - $11,744
Costa Rica is one of the continent's most visited countries, a fact that helps out its GDP. Aside from tourism, some of the other major industries in Costa Rica include agriculture and manufacturing. The country is a major exporter of a number of food goods, such as coffee, pineapples, and bananas.
9. Panama - $15,679
The economy of Panama is driven by the service industry. It is also a free dollarized market that has recorded one of the lowest inflation rates in the past two decades. The economy leans heavily towards tourism, commerce, and banking. The agricultural sector is also a vital pillar of the economy with products such as coffee, rice and sugar cane accounting for 7.4% of the GDP.
8. Trinidad and Tobago - $16,223
Trinidad and Tobago is a twin-island nation found in the Caribbean region. It one of the wealthiest countries in the region, with about 40% of the GDP fueled by the petroleum industry. The recent economic growth has been greatly driven by the diversification of economic products such as steel, liquefied natural gas, and petrochemicals.
7. Antigua and Barbuda - $17,636
The economy of Antigua and Barbuda is service based with more than half of all employment being in the services industry and tourism. This accounts for about 60% of the country’s GDP. Tourism is the nerve-center of Antigua and Barbuda’s economy and continues to thrive owing to a large investment from the government.
6. Barbados - $17,961
Barbados makes the top ten list of the richest countries in North America. This island nation thrives on a mixed economy and has a moderately high standard of living for its citizens. It has the third largest stock exchange among the Caribbean nations.
5. Saint Kitts and Nevis - $18,203
The country’s economy is heavily reliant on growing and processing of sugar cane among other subsistence products. However, a recent change in the orientation of the economy to tourism, manufacturing and offshore banking have seen a resurgence of the economy. Today, the GDP of Saint Kitts and Nevis stands at $18,203 which is among the five best in North America.
4. Aruba - $25,466
Aruba, a territory of the Netherlands, has a per capita income of $25,466. The service sector makes up more than half of the Aruban economy. Other major industries include petroleum, business, finances, and tourism.
3. The Bahamas - $34,002
The Bahamas is a country well-known for its thriving tourism and hospitality industries. It is one of the most prosperous nations in North America in terms of GDP. The island nation relies heavily on tourism to generate income with its numerous attraction sites such as Thunderball Grotto, Grand Bahama, and Paradise Island. Aside from tourism, the financial services sector is also a great contributor to the overall economic growth.
2. Canada - $46,261
Canada is the second-richest country in North America after the United States. The economy of Canada is driven by the dominant service industry which employs about three-quarters of Canadians. Together with natural resources such as oil and logging, Canada’s economy thrives at a GDP of $46,261 per capita. The seafood and commercial fishing industries are also strong pillars of the economy.
1. The United States - $64,606
The United States of America has a GDP per capita of $64,606 making it the world's biggest national economy and one of the wealthiest nations in the country. At about, $17.295 trillion, its ostensible GDP is roughly one-fourth of nominal world GDP. The US has an entrepreneurial oriented economy which is driven by natural resources. Buyers’ spending constitutes about 71 percent of the country's economy.
The Importance of the Service Sector in Determining GDP
In conclusion, North America has a multifaceted economic system whereby, the United States, Canada, and Mexico have the most significant influence due to their economic power or population size. The United States is the most technologically oriented economy-76% of the GDP comprises the service sector- of North America while most other countries have service-based economies.