There is no device to measure the economic health and wealth of a nation, which depends on a number of economic indicators. An economic indicator is a statistic that provides valuable information about the economy. Many different economic indicators are required to measure the strength of an economy.
Here are some of the parameters for judging the economic health of various countries in the world today:
Brazil – is the 12th largest economy in the world as well as the largest in Latin America and the Southern Hemisphere. In 2020, Forbes ranked Brazil as having the 7th largest number of billionaires in the world. Brazil is the largest and most populous nation in Latin America and has the world’s 6th largest mining industry- exporting about 80 mineral commodities. Brazil is also the world’s largest producer of gemstones like amethyst, topaz, agate, tourmaline, emerald, aquamarine, garnet, and opal. At least 20 Brazilian companies are included in the Forbes Global 2000 list. Embraer, a Brazilian company is the third largest aircraft manufacturer in the world, behind Boeing and Airbus, while Gerdau – another Brazilian company is the largest producer of long steel, with more than 45,000 employees as well as 337 industrial and commercial units across 14 countries. Banco Itau Unibanco S.A. a Brazilian financial services company figures among the 20 most valuable banks in the world with branches in Switzerland, the UK, China, Hong Kong, Japan, and UAE in addition to around 45,000 ATMs and 55 million customers worldwide.
Russia is the world’s 11th largest economy and a leading exporter of oil, gas, minerals, and metals. Russia has the fifth-largest number of billionaires in the world. Russia also happens to be an energy superpower with the world’s largest natural gas reserves, second-largest coal reserves, and eighth-largest oil reserves. Russia is also the second-largest exporter of arms. However, the flip side of the coin is that corruption in all walks of life — economy, business, public administration, military, law enforcement, healthcare, and education is a rampant problem in Russia where most people don’t trust law enforcement agencies or courts. Abuse of law, racketeering, and arrest on flimsy grounds is a routine affair. In 2022, Russia attacked Ukraine leading to economic sanctions by 46 countries, making it the most sanctioned country in the world. This is bound to grievously hurt the Russian economy in 2022 and thereafter. The Russian economy is projected to decline 15 percent in 2022, and shrink another 3 percent in 2023, economists say.
- South Korea
South Korea rated to be among the poorest countries of the world till the 1960s has emerged as one of the most remarkable economic success stories in the last few decades with over a trillion dollar GDP. South Korea witnessed one of the fastest economic growth in the world in just a few decades – which is often called – the Miracle on the Han River. South Korea today is a leading producer of ships, and a major exporter of electronics, telecommunications equipment, and motor vehicles. It is one of the world’s largest automobile producers. Hyundai Kia — is South Korea’s largest automaker in terms of revenue, production, and worldwide presence. Over the last two decades South Korea which at one time was importing military equipment and technology has been selling T-155 Firtina self-propelled artillery for Turkey; the K11 air-burst rifle to UAE; the Bangabandhu class guided-missile frigate to Bangladesh; Sirius class fleet tankers to Australia, New Zealand, and Venezuela; Makassar class amphibious assault ships to Indonesia; and KT-1 trainer aircraft for Turkey, Indonesia, and Peru. South Korea today has firmly established itself as an advanced, industrial economy by way of free trade agreements with 58 countries.
Canada is the ninth-largest economy in the world, which is expected to scale new heights by 2023. Canada is considered an energy superpower with the world’s third-largest proven oil reserves and natural resources such as petroleum and natural gas. Canada is rated to be among the world’s top ten trading countries and one of the least corrupt countries in the world according to the Corruption Perceptions Index. Significantly, Canada – with its relatively low level of income disparity and GDP worth trillions of US dollars – ranks above the USA on the Index of Economic Freedom. Most of the manufacturing and service sector units in Canada are based in urban areas near the U.S. border and therefore stand to gain from the free trade relationship with the world’s largest economy. Almost three-quarters of Canadian goods head to the markets in the U.S.A each year. The Toronto Stock Exchange listing over 1,500 companies is the eighth-largest stock exchange in the world, with a combined market capitalization of over US$3 trillion.
Italy is the eighth-largest economy and the eighth-largest exporter in the world, supplying 59% of its goods and services to other European Union countries. Italy is today the world’s sixth-largest manufacturing country, and the second-largest exporter in the European Union, behind Germany, exporting machinery, vehicles, food, clothing, luxury goods, and more. Italy is the largest hub for luxury goods in Europe and the third luxury hub globally. Italy is the world’s sixth-largest manufacturing country and has a large number of small and medium-sized enterprises, grouped in clusters, which are the backbone of the Italian industry. Italy also has the world’s third-largest gold reserve and over 1.4 million people in the country have a net wealth greater than $1 million.
France is the seventh-largest economy in the world and the third-largest economy in Europe behind Germany and UK. France is the sixth-largest agricultural producer and second-largest agricultural exporter in the world, behind the United States with about one-third of agricultural land in the European Union. Agriculture, chemical, and tourism are among the most popular industries in France which happens to be the most visited destination in the world. France also ranks 5th behind the USA, China, Japan, and Germany with 28 of the Global 500 companies.
- United Kingdom
The United Kingdom or Britain once known as the “workshop of the world” is currently the sixth-largest economy in the world and is expected to fall to the seventh slot by 2023. The UK is facing the fastest recession in four decades. Ironically, the United Kingdom was the first country to industrialize and was once the tenth-largest country exporting goods to 160 countries worldwide. Britain has the second-largest aerospace industry and the tenth-largest pharmaceutical industry in the world. London is the second-largest financial center in the world.
India has emerged as the fifth-largest in world economy in the world overtaking UK and France. India has the lowest per-capita GDP. Given the current rate of growth, India is expected to surpass Germany in 2027 and most likely Japan by 2029. According to ECOWRAP a research report authored by Dr. Soumya Kanti Ghosh, Group Chief Economic Adviser, State Bank of India, Corporate Centre; India will become 3rd largest economy by 2029. This is a quantum jump in the last decade (since 2014) when India ranked 10th, while the UK was 5th.
Germany is the fourth-largest economy in the world and a leading manufacturer of cars, machinery, household equipment, and chemicals. Germany is one of the largest exporters in the world and the largest manufacturing economy in Europe. It is also Europe’s largest and strongest economy with one of the most skilled workforces. Germany is one of the leading countries –developing and using green technologies. The German economy is currently in the middle of its fourth industrial revolution due to the Internet and the digital age. Around two-thirds of the world’s leading trade fairs take place in German cities like Hanover, Frankfurt, Cologne, Leipzig, and Düsseldorf. A large number of the world’s 2000 largest publicly listed companies like Allianz, Daimler, Volkswagen, Siemens, BMW, Deutsche Telekom, Bayer, BASF, Munich Re, and SAP are headquartered in Germany.
Japan has the third-largest economy in the world with the largest electronic goods industry and the third-largest automobile industry in the world. A new business model being adopted in Japan today is a network of interlinked companies in Japanese called Keiretsu — literally meaning “headless combine”. As part of the process many Japanese companies – manufacturers, supply chain partners, and distributors work together as partners in progress and sometimes buy equity stakes in each other while remaining operationally independent. This eventually proves to be beneficial to all the parties. Japan also has the world’s fourth-largest consumer market and the world’s second-largest foreign-exchange reserves, worth $1.4 trillion. Japan is the third biggest producer of automobiles with Toyota, Nissan, Honda, Suzuki, and Mazda rubbing shoulders to rank among the largest car makers in the world. Likewise, Japan Airlines is one of the largest companies in the world while four of the five most popular Japanese newspapers are among the most circulated publications in the world.
China is the second-largest economy in the world, with enormous natural resources, and 90% of rare earth metals and coal. Another driving force behind the growth of China’s economy is worker efficiency. China is today the number one exporter, and the largest trading nation in the world – dethroning the USA which previously held the post. China today, is known as “the world’s factory” and a manufacturing powerhouse supplying a diversified range of cheap and inexpensive mobile phones, computers, Toys, electronic gadgets, automotive parts, accessories, lights, and semiconductors being sold worldwide. USA, Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea, Vietnam, Germany, Netherlands, India, United Kingdom, Taiwan, Malaysia, and Thailand are among the bulk buyers accounting for almost 60% sale of products “Made in China”.
- United States
The United States has been the world’s leading economy over the past 150 years. Such is its impact that when the US economy sneezes, the world catches a cold. The U.S.A is the world’s largest importer and second-largest exporter. The U.S. is also one of the leading manufacturing industries in the world, while the U.S. dollar is the most widely used currency all over the world. The U.S. is officially the home to the world’s highest number of billionaires, with a total wealth of $3.0 trillion and almost one-fourth of the world’s largest fortune 500 companies are headquartered in the U.S.A. The U.S. has the world’s largest consumer market, while the New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq are the world’s largest stock exchanges in terms of market capitalization and trade volume.