The Richest Countries in the World (2024)

February 29, 2024

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Parcs de la Pétrusse, Luxembourg

Most people probably think of superpower countries when trying to guess the richest countries in the world. Surely the likes of the US, Russia, and China, as the largest countries in the world, have the most money? In reality, the world’s wealthiest countries are some of the tiniest nations.

There are many different ways to measure a countries wealth but one of the most accurate is GDP per capita PPP, which means Gross domestic product per capita purchasing power parity. It’s the amount of GDP (total value of goods and services) divided by a country’s population.

In this article, we’ll look at the world’s ten richest countries based on GDP per capita PPP, using data from the International Monetary Fund. We’ll look at factors such as the leading sectors in each country, the tax rates, and the population to find out why these are the wealthiest nations.

1. Luxembourg

Luxembourg City
Luxembourg City
GDP per capita (PPP): $145,826

Europe’s seventh-smallest country covers just 2,586 km² and has a population of around 650,000. Luxembourg is known for its high standard of living, quality healthcare and education services.

Luxembourg had world-leading steel and iron industries at the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century. During its peak, the country’s steel industry employed over 50,000 citizens. In the 21st century, Luxembourg’s economy has been largely built on the banking industry, steel, and industrial sectors.

The country has a thriving tourism industry thanks to its stunning castles, canals, and idyllic countryside. Luxembourg’s excellent transport networks have made the country a popular weekend destination for European tourists. There are motorways connecting the country to nearby France, Germany, and Belgium. This helps enable trade across borders.

2. Ireland

River Liffey, Dublin
River Liffey, Dublin
GDP per capita (PPP): $143,180

From being one of Europe’s poorest countries to the second-richest in the world, Ireland’s economy is a true tale of rags to riches. During the 1990s, Ireland had high unemployment, poverty, and low economic growth.

The country is one of the most popular tax havens in the world. Its low corporate tax rate (12.5% in the mid-2010s) has attracted tech giants like Apple, Google, and Microsoft. However, Ireland is set to raise the tax rate to the global standard of 15% in 2024.

Some of Ireland’s main industries include pharmaceuticals, software, and beverages and brewing. The country’s rich natural resources have also contributed to Ireland’s thriving agriculture, forestry, and fishing sectors.

3. Singapore

Singapore at night
Singapore at night
GDP per capita (PPP): $138,549

When Singapore became independent in 1965, many of its citizens were illiterate, and the island country lacked natural resources. Fast forward nearly 60 years, and Singapore has become the third-richest country in the world.

Singapore’s largest industry is manufacturing, which accounts for around 20 to 25% of the country’s GDP. Some of the other main sectors include electronics, chemicals, and telecommunications.

In recent years, Singapore’s economy has suffered. In 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic caused the economy to shrink by 3.9%, which led to a national recession. As one of Singapore’s main trading partners, China’s own struggling economy also hit Singapore hard.

4. Qatar

Doha city skyline, Qatar
Doha city skyline, Qatar
GDP per capita (PPP): $118,147

Qatar is rich in natural resources such as oil and gas, which has massively helped the country become as rich as it is today. The country, which has a population of just under three million, is dwarfed by the huge reserves of oil and gas (the third-largest in the world).

The country is full of modern architecture, with luxurious shopping malls, futuristic skyscrapers, and fine restaurants that showcase Qatar’s delicious cuisine.

The 2022 FIFA World Cup gave Qatar’s economy a healthy boost. Qatar spent an estimated $220 billion on infrastructure projects in the ten years leading up to the tournament. However, the money was well-spent as the World Cup has brought Qatar to attention on the world stage, and it may see increased tourist numbers in the coming years.

5. United Arab Emirates

Abu Dhabi skyline
Abu Dhabi skyline, United Arab Emirates
GDP per capita (PPP): $92,954

When you think of the United Arab Emirates, you likely picture sleek skyscrapers, luxury resorts, and Burj Khalifa (the world’s tallest building). The country’s popularity amongst tourists has helped build its wealth, as has its oil and natural gas reserves.

It’s estimated only 10% to 20% of the nine million population are native Emiratis — the largest portion of the population are expatriates. One of the major draws is the tax-free salaries in Dubai and the thriving economy across the whole country. Salaries are often higher than elsewhere in the world too.

The United Arab Emirates has thriving finance, technology, and healthcare sectors with lots of career opportunities that attract people from around the world.

6. Switzerland

Aerial view of Zurich, Switzerland
Aerial view of Zurich
GDP per capita (PPP): $92,519

Home to approximately 8.7 million people. Switzerland has one of the world’s most robust economies, with a low unemployment rate, a skilled workforce, and political stability.

Switzerland is a popular tourist destination thanks to its stunning alpine landscape, world-famous clocks and chocolate. 74% of the country’s GDP is generated from the services sector, and 25% comes from industry. Switzerland has the lowest VAT (value-added tax) in Europe: a rate of 2.5% is applied to most everyday items, and accommodation services have a rate of 3.7%.

The country is notoriously neutral during wartime, which has helped ensure the stability of Switzerland’s economy. During the Second World War, Switzerland was allowed to trade with both sides, whereas other countries had certain supplies cut off.

7. San Marino

San Marino
San Marino
GDP per capita (PPP): $86,893

San Marino has earned a reputation as the tax haven of wealthy Italians due to its low tax rates. Capital gains tax is charged at 5%, and companies are charged 19%. Over the years, many rich Italians have deposited large sums of money to banks in San Marino to avoid the higher tax rates in Italy.

San Marino is the world’s fifth-smallest country, covering an area of just 61 km². It has a population of just 34,000, a tiny fraction compared to neighboring Italy’s 60 million-strong population. The country is also one of the world’s oldest republics, having been founded in 301 AD.

As with other small countries on this list, San Marino benefits from its tiny population and strong economy. The financial and manufacturing sectors account for around half of the country’s revenue, while tourism is

8. Norway

Alesund, Norway
Alesund, Norway
GDP per capita (PPP): $84,850

In times of economic hardship, Norwegians are in a much better position than other countries. Norway’s sovereign wealth fund is worth $1.4 trillion, the largest fund of its kind in the world! This type of fund can be used to deal with financial crises, which would otherwise have a devastating effect on the country’s economy.

Norway’s production of natural gas and oil is a major source of the country’s wealth. The sector accounts for around 20% of Norway’s economy, while revenue from petroleum is deposited straight into the country’s sovereign wealth fund. Norway is currently one of the biggest petroleum producers in Western Europe.

Other major sectors in Norway include fish, forestry, and minerals. Norway is a country rich with abundant natural resources and a relatively small population. The country covers a land area of 304,282 km² and has a population of around 5.5 million. As such, the money goes a lot further and strengthens the economy.

9. United States

San Francisco
Sunrise over San Francisco
GDP per capita (PPP): $83,062

This superpower nation is the second-largest country in the world; the United States has a population of 334 million, far larger than the other countries on this list. One of the only reasons the US isn’t higher on this list is the large population, as the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita means the nation’s wealth is divided amongst more people.

More billionaires live in the US than anywhere else in the world. There are over 700 billionaires in the US, including four of the five richest people in the world. Many of these have made their money through tech companies, e-commerce, and real estate.

The country is full of entrepreneurs who want to live their own ‘American dream’. While the US is known for its multinational corporations, many companies have chosen to be headquartered in the country. California’s Silicon Valley is home to many leading tech companies such as Apple, Google and Microsoft.

10. Guyana

Georgetown, Guyana
Aerial view of Georgetown, Guyana
GDP per capita (PPP): $78,841

Nestled on the northern coast of South America, Guyana is a country of immense cultural diversity, natural beauty, and burgeoning economic potential. While historically known for its rich biodiversity and vast rainforests, Guyana is increasingly gaining attention for its remarkable economic growth and development strides.

In recent years, Guyana has emerged as one of the fastest-growing economies in the world, largely propelled by its booming oil industry. The discovery of significant offshore oil reserves has transformed Guyana’s economic landscape, attracting substantial investments and spurring rapid infrastructural development.

In little more than 4 years, Guyana’s GDP per capita (PPP) has quadrupled from just under $20,000 and is projected to grow substantially more in future years.

Ranking of all Countries by GDP per capita (PPP)

*Non-UN member states are indicated with *

RankCountryGDP per capita (PPP)
1Luxembourg$145,826
2Ireland$143,179
3Singapore$138,545
*Macao$125,511
4Qatar$118,148
5United Arab Emirates$92,954
6Switzerland$92,519
7San Marino$86,894
8Norway$84,851
9United States$83,063
10Guyana$78,841
11Denmark$77,480
12Brunei$76,864
*Taiwan$76,326
*Hong Kong$76,154
13Netherlands$75,541
14Iceland$72,492
15Saudi Arabia$71,365
16Austria$70,821
17Andorra$69,042
18Germany$68,129
19Belgium$67,650
20Sweden$67,530
21Malta$66,716
22Australia$66,098
23Bahrain$62,751
24Finland$61,600
25Canada$61,318
26France$60,735
27South Korea$59,349
28United Kingdom$58,227
29Israel$56,678
30Cyprus$56,600
31Italy$56,016
32New Zealand$55,034
33Japan$54,103
34Kuwait$53,758
35Slovenia$53,698
*Aruba$53,196
36Spain$52,272
37Lithuania$52,200
38Europe$51,873
39Czechia$50,889
40Poland$47,700
41Estonia$47,383
42Portugal$46,903
43Bahamas$46,299
44Hungary$46,037
45Croatia$45,087
46Panama$44,883
47Slovakia$44,259
48Seychelles$44,057
49Romania$43,747
50Türkiye$43,624
51Latvia$42,997
*Puerto Rico$42,755
52Greece$41,593
53Oman$40,022
54Maldives$39,173
55Malaysia$39,069
56Russian$36,562
57Bulgaria$35,853
58Kazakhstan$34,476
59Trinidad and Tobago$31,946
60Saint Kitts and Nevis$31,408
61Mauritius$31,158
62Chile$30,911
63Central Asia and the Caucasus$29,707
64Montenegro$29,677
65Costa Rica$28,025
66Argentina$27,576
67Serbia$27,575
68Dominican Republic$27,231
69Antigua and Barbuda$27,062
70Libya$26,528
71Mexico$25,876
72Belarus$25,012
73China$24,839
74Georgia$24,036
75Thailand$23,708
76North Macedonia$22,576
77Grenada$21,337
78Armenia$21,200
79Albania$20,739
80Bosnia and Herzegovina$20,734
81Brazil$20,729
82Iran$20,694
83Turkmenistan$20,551
84Botswana$20,312
85South America$20,198
86Colombia$20,111
87Gabon$19,866
88Barbados$19,860
89Saint Lucia$19,730
90Azerbaijan$19,370
91Saint Vincent and the Grenadines$19,136
92Suriname$19,052
93Moldova$18,367
94Egypt$17,786
95Fiji$17,505
96Palau$17,448
97Equatorial Guinea$17,237
98Indonesia$16,843
*Kosovo$16,760
99South Africa$16,625
100Peru$16,534
101Paraguay$16,270
102Mongolia$15,900
103Vietnam$15,318
104Dominica$15,271
105Bhutan$14,920
106Ukraine$14,878
107Algeria$14,228
108Tunisia$13,694
109Ecuador$13,642
110Jamaica$13,513
111Jordan$13,442
112Eswatini$12,392
113El Salvador$12,172
114Philippines$12,127
115Iraq$12,048
116Namibia$11,972
117Belize$11,529
118Nauru$11,352
119Guatemala$10,998
120Morocco$10,926
121Uzbekistan$10,909
122Bolivia$10,625
123Cabo Verde$10,463
124Laos$10,269
125India$9,892
126Bangladesh$9,414
127Venezuela$8,560
128Nicaragua$7,990
129Mauritania$7,949
130Tonga$7,491
131Djibouti$7,475
132Honduras$7,429
133Côte d'Ivoire$7,395
134Angola$7,257
135Ghana$7,071
136Pakistan$6,961
137Kenya$6,957
138Samoa$6,888
139Palestine$6,821
140Kyrgyzstan$6,724
141Cambodia$6,541
142Nigeria$6,322
143Marshall Islands$6,085
144Tuvalu$6,076
145Congo, Republic of$5,785
146Tajikistan$5,658
147Myanmar$5,349
148Nepal$5,226
149Cameroon$4,846
150Senegal$4,684
151Benin$4,552
152Pacific Islands$4,427
153São Tomé and Príncipe$4,251
154Zambia$4,224
155Micronesia$4,129
156Ethiopia$3,975
157Tanzania$3,788
158Timor-Leste$3,706
159Sudan$3,604
160Papua New Guinea$3,581
161Comoros$3,535
162Guinea$3,415
163Uganda$3,383
164Lesotho$3,344
165Rwanda$3,344
166Haiti$3,260
167Guinea-Bissau$3,247
168Gambia$2,992
169Vanuatu$2,983
170Togo$2,910
171Zimbabwe$2,858
172Burkina Faso$2,841
173Mali$2,740
174Solomon Islands$2,464
175Kiribati$2,457
176Sierra Leone$2,201
177Yemen$2,095
178Somalia$2,062
179Madagascar$1,988
180Liberia$1,882
181Chad$1,863
182Niger$1,730
183Malawi$1,712
184Mozambique$1,654
185DR Congo$1,565
186Central African Republic$1,138
187Burundi$936
188South Sudan$493

Data Sources:
International Monetary Fund, World Economic Outlook (October 2023)

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