Economics

The Richest Countries In The World

The richest countries in the world can be measured by GDP per capita.

Share

Read more about

The following are the world's wealthiest countries by Gross Domestic Product (at Purchasing Power Parity) per capita. Using the Purchasing Power Parity (PPP) value of all final goods shows the true value of a dollar within a country in a given year. Oil nations dominate the list, as well as a few surprises. All figures in this article are taken from the latest 2018 numbers according to the International Monetary Fund.

10. Australia - $56,352

Residents of the world's largest island country, Australia, enjoy an average annual income of over $50,000 US dollars. The country has a strong economy with an emphasis on the service sector. Thanks to a huge wealth of natural resources, the country enjoys a competitive position among the world's importers and exporters. Australia has the world's highest number of people making over $100,000. 

9. Denmark - $60,692 

The Scandanavian nation of Denmark is sometimes cited as the world's happiest country, but it is also one of the world's richest countries. Residents of this country enjoy a strong economy dominated by the service sector, strong social services, and one of the world's highest standards of gender equality. Taxes in Denmark account for just short of half of the country's GDP – a model typical of Nordic Countries. 

8. United States - $62,606

While most nations on the list have (relatively) small populations, it is impressive that the world's largest economy, the United States, can maintain a per capita GDP (PPP) of $62,606, considering its population of over 310 million people. Reasons behind its success include its large domestic automotive industry, a technological sector that fosters innovation, and a system of democracy that protects entrepreneurial and intellectual property rights.

7. Singapore - $60,041

The microstate of Singapore has a per capita income of over 60,000 US dollars, which makes it one of the world's wealthiest places. The basis of Singapore's wealth is its financial services sector, a chemical export industry, and its liberal economic policies that encourage growth and innovation. Singapore has the second busiest port in the world, exporting $414 billion of goods in 2011 alone.

6. Qatar - $70,779

Qatars the sixth richest country in the world with a per capita income of $70,779. Qatar has a well-developed oil exploration industry where the petroleum industry accounts for 70% of its government revenue, 60% of its GDP and 85% of its export earnings. Although the size of Qatar's GDP is barely within the top 50 largest in the world, the country's relatively low population of two million results in a large GDP per capita, where most residents of the country enjoy a very high standard of living.

5. Iceland - $74,278

Iceland is a small country with a small population of just over 300,000, making it one of the world's least populated places. Although the country experienced some problems of inflation during the 2000s, a tourism boom in the 2010s helped shape up the economy. Some of the largest industries in Iceland include energy production (particularly geothermal), agriculture, aluminum processing, and the service industry. 

4. Ireland - $76,099

The Emerald Isle has a per capita income of $76,099 with a population of about 4.8 million people. The main industries that boost its economy are textiles, mining, and food production - staple products in any economy. In OECD (Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development) rankings, Ireland actually places 4th overall.

3. Norway - $81,695 

This Nordic nation's per capita GDP of $81,695 allows its 4.97 million people to reap the benefits of a small yet robust economy. Driven by fishing, natural resources, and major petroleum exploration, Norway is the eighth largest exporter of crude oil, 9th largest exporter of refined oil, and 3rd largest exporter of natural gas in the world. Norway also consistently ranks among the world's best places to live.

2. Switzerland - $89,950

The GDP (PPP) per Swiss citizen is $89,950. Swiss banking and financial institutions keep this country and its economy afloat. It is important to note that some of the wealthiest people and companies in the world own Swiss bank accounts and therefore Switzerland has excess capital to use for investment purposes. Zurich and Geneva, Switzerland's most well-known cities, have consistently ranked among the top ten worldwide in terms of standards of living.

1. Luxembourg - $114,234

Luxembourg is the richest country in the world, with a per capita income of $114,234. The backbone of this landlocked western European nation's strong economy is its vibrant financial sector, prudent fiscal policies, and dynamic industrial and steel sectors. Banking in Luxembourg is the largest sector of its economy with an asset base of over $1.24 trillion alone.

What is the Richest Country in the World?

With a GDP per capita of $124,930, the Middle Eastern nation of Qatar is the world's richest country.

The 25 Richest Countries in the World

Rank´╗┐CountryPer Capita Income (USD)
1Luxembourg114,234.24
2Switzerland82,950.28
3Norway81,694.63
4Ireland76,098.59
5Iceland74,278.17
6Qatar70,779.52
7Singapore64,041.42
8United States62,605.59
9Denmark60,692.42
10Australia56,351.58
11Sweden53,873.38
12Netherlands53,106.38
13Austria51,509.03
14Finland49,845.02
15San Marino48,946.43
16Germany48,264.01
17Belgium46,724.35
18Canada46,260.71
19France42,877.56
20United Kingdom42,558.00
21Israel41,644.08
22New Zealand41,266.85
23United Arab Emirates40,711.45
24Japan39,305.78
25Italy34,260.34

Citations

Your MLA Citation

Your APA Citation

Your Chicago Citation

Your Harvard Citation

Remember to italicize the title of this article in your Harvard citation.

Share

More in Economics