SA’s economic freedom ranking in freefall

2010-09-21 00:00

SOUTH Africa is ranked 82nd in the Economic Freedom of the World: 2010 Annual Report released yesterday by the Free Market Foundation (FMF).

Last year, South Africa ranked 70th.

In the Economic Freedom of the World: 2002 Annual Report, South Africa was ranked 42nd.

It has taken less than a decade to slide 40 places down the rankings, the FMF said.

This year’s report shows that economic freedom experienced its first global downturn in a quarter-century, with the average score falling to 6,67 in 2008 (the most recent year for which data is available) from 6,74 in 2007.

“In response to the economic decline of 2008, many countries opted for perverse credit expansion and regulatory policies, damaging economic freedom and hindering future growth,” said Leon Louw, executive director of the FMF.

“Even in the wake of recession, the quality of life in nations with free and open markets is vastly superior to that of countries with government-managed economies.”

The report ranks Hong Kong as number one, followed by Singapore and New Zealand.

Zimbabwe once again has the lowest level of economic freedom among the 141 jurisdictions included in the study, followed by Myanmar, Angola, and Venezuela.

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