Montenegro the 42nd freest economy in the world

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Montenegro has improved its position and advanced to the 42nd spot from 80th, according to the Economic Freedom of the World 2021 Annual Report published by the Fraser Institute.
Supported by its strong performance in the sound money area, the Balkan nation saw its rating climbing up the most among all 11 countries in Southeast Europe (SEE).

The report, which was first launched in 1996, measures economic freedom—defined as the ability of individuals to make their own economic decisions—by analyzing the policies and institutions of 165 countries and territories. Indicators include regulation, freedom to trade internationally, size of government, property rights, government spending and taxation.

Four other SEE countries improved their scores compared to last year’s edition of the report: Greece moved up to the 78th spot from 92nd, Moldova advanced to 66th position from 78th, Serbia from 74th to 72nd and Slovenia from 62nd to 52nd.

Six SEE countries ranked lower: Albania descended to the 31st position from 26th, Bosnia-Herzegovina ranks 90th (from 82nd ), Bulgaria dropped to 36th from 32nd, North Macedonia fell from 71th to 79th and Romania ranks 26th from 23th.

Montenegro
(Source: Fraser Institute)

Even though Romania and Albania performed worse than in the previous ranking, the two are once again the most economically free jurisdictions among 11 countries in SEE.

Romania’s rating was positively influenced by the country’s good performance in terms of freedom to trade internationally. Albania’s score was due to the country’s good performance in the sound money area of the indicator Bosnia and Herzegovina was the least economically active jurisdiction among the 11 SEE countries

Hong Kong again ranks 1st followed by Singapore, New Zealand, Switzerland, Georgia, the United States, Ireland, Lithuania, Australia and Denmark.

The ten lowest-rated countries are: Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Syria, Republic of Congo, Iran, Zimbabwe, Algeria, Libya, Sudan, and, lastly, Venezuela.

People living in countries with high levels of economic freedom enjoy greater prosperity, more political and civil liberties, and longer lives. For example, countries in the top quartile of economic freedom had an average per capita GDP of US$50,619 in 2019, compared to US$5,911 for bottom quartile countries. And poverty rates are lower. In the top quartile, 0.9 per cent of the population experienced extreme poverty (US$1.90 a day) compared to 34.1 per cent in the lowest quartile.

The Fraser Institute produces the annual Economic Freedom of the World report in cooperation with the Economic Freedom Network, a group of independent research and educational institutes in nearly 100 countries and territories. It’s the world’s premier measurement of economic freedom.