Estonia seventh in the world by economic freedom, fourth in Europe

Estonia is ranked seventh in this year’s Heritage Foundation Index of Economic Freedom, and fourth in Europe.

Estonia’s economic freedom score is 80.0, making its economy the seventh freest in the 2022 Index.  

Estonia is ranked fourth among 45 countries in the Europe region, and its overall score is above the regional and world averages.  

“Over the past five years, Estonia’s economic growth slowed from 2017 through 2019, contracted in 2020, and rebounded in 2021. Estonia’s enviable record of vibrant economic freedom has been rewarded this year,” according to the index.  

“Helped by robust increases in scores for business freedom and rule of law, Estonia has recorded a 0.9-point overall gain of economic freedom since 2017 and for the first time in its Index scoring history has made it over the threshold from the ‘Mostly Free’ category into the top ‘Free’ category.”

Estonia ranks higher than its neighbours – including Finland and Sweden

“The only glaring weakness in an otherwise admirable performance is in the score for government spending,” the index added.  

The index also points out that as of 1 December 2021, 1,803 deaths had been attributed to the coronavirus pandemic in Estonia – and the “government’s response to the crisis ranked 133rd among the countries included in this Index in terms of its stringency”.  

The freest economy in the world, according to the index, is in Singapore, followed by Switzerland, Ireland and Luxembourg. New Zealand ranks fifth and Taiwan sixth; Finland is ranked ninth and Denmark concludes the top 10.  

Sweden is ranked 11th, Lithuania 17th and Latvia 18th in the 2022 index; Russia is 113th.  

The index is calculated based on 12 freedoms – from property rights to financial freedom – in 184 countries. It is compiled by the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank based in Washington, DC. Over two decades, the index has measured the impact of liberty and free markets around the world.

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