Saint Vincent and the Grenadines’ economic freedom score is 66.8, making it’s economy the 59th freest in the 2020 Index.
The top ten ranking states considered to have the most “free” economies are Singapore, Hong Kong, New Zealand, Australia, Switzerland, Ireland, the UK, Denmark, Canada and Estonia.
Its overall score has increased by 1.0 point due to a higher property rights score. Saint Vincent and the Grenadines is ranked 10th among 32 countries in the Americas region, and its overall score is well above the regional and world averages.
Barbados is ranked (92) Jamaica (49th), St Lucia (50th) and the Bahamas (69th).
The economy of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines has been considered moderately free ever since its first grading in the Index in 2009. GDP growth for the past five years has been tepid.
Many fundamentals for greater economic freedom, such as flexible regulations, an efficient legal system that secures private property, and macroeconomic stability, are in place.
Greater access to private financing and more openness to trade and international investment would improve the business climate as well as those Index indicators. Establishment of a specialized national anticorruption agency would improve government integrity.
The annual report, which is published by the Washington-based think tank The Heritage Foundation, examines countries’ economic policy development.
The report grades and ranks countries by measuring economic freedom based on 12 qualitative and quantitative factors grouped into four pillars – rule of law (property rights, government integrity and judicial effectiveness); government size (government spending, tax burden and fiscal health); regulatory efficiency (business freedom, labour freedom and monetary freedom); and open market (trade freedom, investment freedom and financial freedom).
It defines economic freedom as the fundamental right of every human to control his or her own labour and property, adding that in an economically free society, individuals are free to work, produce, consume and invest in any way they please.
“In economically free societies, governments allow labour, capital and goods to move freely, and refrain from coercion or constraint of liberty beyond the extent necessary to protect and maintain liberty itself,” it added.