Hong Kong retains rank as world leader in economic freedom - Asia-Pacific consolidates rise in wealth
In the latest report by published by the highly regarded Cato Institute, Hong Kong continues to retain its position at the top of the global rankings for economic freedom. The ranking confirms Hong Kong as a world leader, a position it has held for the last six years, ahead of Singapore and New Zealand in second and third places.
The remaining of the top ten countries are Switzerland, Mauritius, United Arab Emirates, Canada, Australia, Jordan, with Chile and Finland jointly rated tenth. The United States has seen it rating fall in recent years from second (in 2000) to its present position of twelfth, a position it holds jointly with the United Kingdom.
The economic freedom rating is calculated by reference to a country’s respect for the rule of law, the level of regulation of economic activity, individual freedom of choice, security of property rights and the presence of a sound currency which are among a range of factors that the report takes into consideration. The report notes that the effect of the war on terror and drugs in the US has resulted in its decline in the ratings in recent years.
The report’s authors note that the nations with the greatest economic freedom enjoy a significantly higher per capita GDP, an average of almost USD40,000 in the upper quartile, against USD6,250 in the lower quartile, with greater life expectancy and both political and civil liberties.
The survey covers 152 countries across the world and, of the major world economies, includes Japan (23rd), Germany (28th), South Korea (33rd), France (58th), Italy (79th) Russia (98th), Brazil (103rd), India (110th) and China(115th).
Asia-Pacific Wealth Report 2015
According to the Asia-Pacific Wealth Report 2015 (APWR), published in September by Capgemini and RBC Wealth Management China and India were among the key emerging markets to spearhead the continued rise in Asia-Pacific's High Net Worth Individual (HNWI)1 population and wealth in 2014,
Asia-Pacific has already surpassed North America with the largest HNWI population (4.69 million versus 4.68 million), according to the recent World Wealth Report 2015, and is expected to overtake North America's leading US$16.2 trillion in HNWI wealth by the end of the year.
Overall, Asia-Pacific saw its HNWI population grow 8.5% in 2014 to 4.7 million people – one million more than just two years ago – while wealth increased 11.4% to US$15.8 trillion, leading all regions globally. A graphic accompanying this release is available at http://media.globenewswire.com/cache/29447/file/37179.pdf