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The World in Figures Countries

The World in Figures Countries



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Published by: Dark Knights on Jan 05, 2009
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The world in figures: Countries
The severe reprimand delivered bythe EU for misuse of its funds inmid-2008 will dent the confidence of foreign investors whose projects haveunderpinned Bulgaria’s strong growthrates. This may not be altogether bad:the inflow of capital goods and rawmaterials required by those inwardinvestors has helped push the current-account deficit to a staggering level. Itwill narrow in 2009, but only to 16.6%of GDP. The government’s iron grip onthe fiscal accounts will continue.
GDP growth: 3.5%GDP: $63bn (PPP: $81bn)Inflation: 3.5%Population: 4.5mGDP per head: $14,020 (PPP: $18,120)
Croatia will conclude its accessionnegotiations with the EU, butmembership will be delayed until 2011at the earliest. The EU feels it may haveopened the door too quickly to Bulgariaand Romania, and wants to avoid arepeat. The pro-agrarian stance of theCroatian Peasants Party, on whose votesthe Croatian Democratic Union-ledgovernment relies, could complicateaccession talks. Rising productivity willkeep economic growth above 3%.
GDP growth: 3.4%GDP: $223bn (PPP: $286bn)Inflation: 3.1%Population: 10.2mGDP per head: $21,860 (PPP: $28,040)
The government faces rising oppositionto its fiscal-reform programme, notleast from within the three-party rulingcoalition. A dissident block within thedominant Civic Democratic Party is themain threat to stability. The countrybegins its six-month stint in the EUpresidency on January 1st, and that willbring some unity, but the coalition’sinternal divisions will come increasinglyto the fore thereafter.
GDP growth: 0.8%GDP: $399bn (PPP: $343bn)Inflation: 2.3%Population: 8.4mGDP per head: $47,600 (PPP: $40,860)
An alliance between the centre-rightAustrian People’s Party and the centre-left Social Democrats seemed a likelyoutcome of snap elections in September2008. The death of Jörg Haider, formerleader of the right-wing Freedom Party,will make it easier for the party and thebreakaway faction Mr Haider headed toconsider reuniting. Weaker investmentwill hold back the economy.
GDP growth: 0.5%GDP: $492bn (PPP: $404bn)Inflation: 3.6%Population: 10.6mGDP per head: $46,370 (PPP: $38,040)
Yves Leterme’s government, comprisingthe Flemish and francophone ChristianDemocrats and Liberals and thefrancophone Socialists, will probablycall an early national election in Juneto coincide with regional and Europeancontests, having failed to satisfy the
2009 forecasts unless otherwise indicated.Inflation:year-on-year annual average.Dollar GDPs calculated using 2009 forecasts for dollarexchange rates (GDP at PPP, or purchasing-power parity,shown in brackets).All figures simplified by rounding.
Austria113Belgium113Bulgaria113Croatia113Czech Republic113Denmark114Estonia114Finland114France114Germany114Greece114Hungary114Ireland114Italy114Latvia114Lithuania114Netherlands115Norway115Poland115Portugal115Romania115Russia115Slovakia115Slovenia115Spain115Sweden116Switzerland116Turkey116Ukraine116United Kingdom116
Australia116China116Hong Kong116India116Indonesia117Japan117Kazakhstan117Malaysia117New Zealand117Pakistan117Philippines117Singapore117South Korea117Sri Lanka118Taiwan118Thailand118Uzbekistan118Vietnam118
North America
Canada118Mexico118United States118
Latin America
Middle Eastand Africa
Algeria120Angola120Cameroon120Egypt120Ethiopia120Iran120Iraq120Israel120Jordan120Kenya122Lebanon122Libya122Morocco122Nigeria122Saudi Arabia122South Africa122Tanzania122Zimbabwe122
As the world’s richest countries struggleeconomically, the fastest growth will beconcentrated among the minnows—though mainly, as in the past, withproducers of sought-after commodities.In fact, take out China and the combinedeconomic output of those on the listis about equal to Thailand’s. China, 16times bigger, manages only fifth place,though 8% growth is nothing to sniff at: it will add $250bn to real global GDPin 2009.Oil wealth explains the strongperformance of the top three, andof Turkmenistan; other commoditiesunderpin a further five (Uzbekistan’sgold, Malawi’s uranium, Mozambique’ssteel, Madagascar’s nickel, Armenia’sbase metals). But with the 2008 reversalin commodities prices, the natural-resources boom may be over.Strong Western investment will helpGeorgia recover from Russia’s territorialincursion in 2008.
Rank Country GDP growth, %
1 Qatar 13.42 Angola 9.83 Congo (Brazzaville) 8.54 Malawi 8.35 China 8.05 Georgia 8.05 Uzbekistan 8.08 Madagascar 7.29 Mozambique 7.110 Turkmenistan 7.010 Azerbaijan 7.010 Armenia 7.0demands by the country’s Flemishmajority for devolution. At an anaemic0.5%, economic growth will be muchslower than in 2008, with scarcer creditand weak business confidence bringinginvestment nearly to a halt.
GDP growth: 4.1%GDP: $52bn (PPP: $102bn)Inflation: 8.0%Population: 7.5mGDP per head: $6,990 (PPP: $13,650)
Good news and bad
% changeCurrent-account balance% of GDP% of GDPConsumer pricesBudget balance
          2          0          0          0          2          0          0          1          2          0          0          2          2          0          0          3          2          0          0          4          2          0          0          5          2          0          0          6          2          0          0          7          2          0          0          8          2          0          0          9
Sustained effort
Energy source as % of total
Source: European Commission19902000201020202030
RenewablesNuclearGasOilSolid fuels
Main event
: Rebuilding the shattered banking system
Euro-zone growth
: 0%
EU-27 growth
: 0.1%
Eastern and central Europe
: 4.4%
Russia and CIS
: 4.5%
For an interactive versionof these pages, go to:
www.economist.com/ theworldin
The world in figures
To watch
: Pedal to metal. Thecommissioning of new automotiveproduction facilities will boost exportrevenue in 2009, offsetting a lacklustretrend in world trade.
GDP growth: -0.4%GDP: $328bn (PPP: $211bn)Inflation: 2.4%Population: 5.5mGDP per head: $59,850 (PPP: $38,500)
A shaky housing market, risingborrowing rates and declining equityprices are sapping the confidence of Danish consumers. All of this will keepthe economy mostly flat in 2009. Thethird-term prime minister, Anders FoghRasmussen, and his minority Liberal-Conservative coalition survive thanksmainly to support from the DanishPeople’s Party, but there are costs, suchas keeping a tight grip on immigrationdespite a stretched labour market.
GDP growth: -1.0%GDP: $25bn (PPP: $29bn)Inflation: 6.3%Population: 1.3mGDP per head: $18,550 (PPP: $21,890)
Estonia led Europe into post-credit-crunch stagflation in 2008 as theeconomy contracted by 1.5% andinflation topped 10%. Things will be onlyslightly better in 2009: GDP will shrinkagain as inflation falls to 6.3%. Divisionswithin the ruling coalition threaten itssurvival, but any likely replacementwould maintain the same policies.
To watch
: Pipe dreams. Organists fromaround the world will pull out all thestops at the 22nd International OrganFestival, to be held in Tallinn’s historicchurches from August 1st to 10th.
GDP growth: 1.1%GDP: $268bn (PPP: $207bn)Inflation: 2.7%Population: 5.3mGDP per head: $50,540 (PPP: $38,970)
Less exposed than other Europeans tofinancial turmoil, Finland will use itsfiscal surplus for employment-boostingtax cuts. Economic growth will slow to1.1%—tepid, but better than the restof western Europe. The popularity of theprime minister, Matti Vanhanen, willplumb new depths, and the four-partycoalition may be reduced to three if the Greens pull out over environmentalpolicy. Still, the government shouldsurvive until elections set for 2011.
To watch
: Loggerheads. A treblingof Russian tariffs on Finland’s timberexports will take effect on January 1st,barring a last-minute settlement.
GDP growth: -0.3%GDP: $2,334bn (PPP: $1,872bn)Inflation: 2.3%Population: 58.1mGDP per head: $40,150 (PPP: $32,210)
Twin majorities in the two houses of parliament put the government of the prime minister, Silvio Berlusconi,on a firm footing by local standards,and disarray in the opposition after aheavy election defeat means that thegovernment will manage to survivethe year. But Mr Berlusconi’s penchantfor populism and strains within hiscoalition will prevent progress on allbut the least ambitious reforms. Theeconomy will contract and the fiscaldeficit will rise, as tax revenue falls andsocial spending climbs.
GDP growth: -1.5%GDP: $33bn (PPP: $42bn)Inflation: 6.5%Population: 2.3mGDP per head: $14,440 (PPP: $18,580)
The economy will contract for a secondconsecutive year. Sluggish demand willat least deliver lower inflation and adeclining current-account deficit—though at 10% of GDP it will remainvery high. The four-party coalitiongovernment, which rose from the ashesof the administration that collapsedin 2007, may succumb to the samecorruption charges that finished itspredecessor, but political upheaval willhave little bearing on the economy.
GDP growth: 1.6%GDP: $49bn (PPP: $69bn)Inflation: 6.7%Population: 3.3mGDP per head: $14,510 (PPP: $20,680)
Less benighted than its Balticneighbours, Lithuania’s economy willat least grow in 2009, though by only1.6%. This will be a sharp pullback fromthe country’s post EU-accession burst
GDP growth: 1.4%GDP: $351bn (PPP: $358bn)Inflation: 3.0%Population: 11.0mGDP per head: $31,890 (PPP: $32,600)
The centre-right New Democracygovernment, with a two-seat majority,could be forced to call early electionsif the courts rule against it in a briberycase. On balance, though, it is likelyto see out its term. The oppositionPanhellenic Socialist Movement hasits own troubles, and could face aleadership battle if results in the June2009 European Parliament electionprove disappointing.The huge current-account deficit willnarrow, but only because imports willslip on flagging consumer and businessdemand.
GDP growth: 1.5%GDP: $146bn (PPP: $211bn)Inflation: 4.1%Population: 9.9mGDP per head: $14,720 (PPP: $21,330)
The Hungarian Socialist Party will remainin power even though it was reducedto a minority government after losingits coalition partner, the HungarianLiberal Party, in early 2008. By contrast,the prime minister, Ferenc Gyurcsany,may face a leadership challenge as hispopularity evaporates.The economy is in dire straits as demandfor Hungary’s manufactured goodscrumbles and the currency swings wildly,amid market turbulence. Internationalbail-out packages are on the way to savethe economy.
To watch
: Word war. A rhetorical battlewith neighbouring Slovakia over second-world-war property disputes may gathermomentum as nationalist sentimentsstir ahead of elections in 2010.
GDP growth: -2.0%GDP: $280bn (PPP: $193bn)Inflation: 2.3%Population: 4.3mGDP per head: $64,500 (PPP: $44,470)
The economy will struggle throughthe rubble of the housing bust, withoutput falling, unemployment risingand the budget deficit smashingthrough the ceiling of the EU’s stabilityand growth pact. Strains with the EUwill intensify if Ireland cannot deliversupport for the Lisbon treaty—whichoverhauls the union’s institutions andgovernance—in a second referendum,following its rejection in 2008. Thethree-party coalition government led bythe Taoiseach (the prime minister), BrianCowen, will wobble, but survive.
GDP growth: -0.1%GDP: $2,734bn (PPP: $2,226bn)Inflation: 1.7%Population: 62.3mGDP per head: $43,910 (PPP: $35,750)
France will again test Europe’s budgetrules as its deficit breaks through theofficial ceiling (3% of GDP). This reflectsthe impact of slower growth on revenuecollection and the effect of tax cutsunmatched on the spending side. TheFrench economy will struggle to growin the face of a European banking crisis,weak consumer demand and fallinghouse prices, weakening support forthe president, Nicolas Sarkozy. This willcomplicate the government’s pursuit of the more radical of its reform proposals,including changes to the welfare systemand efforts to raise purchasing power,promote competition and streamlinepublic administration.
GDP growth: 0.2%GDP: $3,440bn (PPP: $2,989bn)Inflation: 2.1%Population: 82.8mGDP per head: $41,550 (PPP: $36,100)
Angela Merkel, the chancellor, isprobably heading for re-election inSeptember; her Christian DemocraticUnion/Christian Social Union (CDU/CSU)may even get enough votes to end theneed for another “grand coalition” withthe Social Democratic Party. With littlepopular appetite for market-led reformsand Ms Merkel firm in resisting populistpressures, policymaking has beenreduced to uncontroversial tinkering.But a CDU/CSU-dominated governmentcould regain some reform momentum.Export sales growth to the US andAsia—Germany’s capital goods aremuch prized—will continue to fallbecause of weaker demand brought onby a global recession.
Fewer jobs, higher pay
Unemployment rate (right-hand scale, %)
          2          0          0          0          2          0          0          1          2          0          0          2          2          0          0          3          2          0          0          4          2          0          0          5          2          0          0          6          2          0          0          7          2          0          0          8          2          0          0          9
Average real wages (left-hand scale, % change)
End of the boom
          2          0          0          0          2          0          0          1          2          0          0          2          2          0          0          3          2          0          0          4          2          0          0          5          2          0          0          6          2          0          0          7          2          0          0          8          2          0          0          9
Real GDP (% change)Unemployment rate (%)Budget balance (% of GDP)
The world in figures
of the popular prime minister, RobertFico, might get a stronger mandate insubsequent elections.
GDP growth: 3.0%GDP: $56bn (PPP: $63bn)Inflation: 3.5%Population: 2.0mGDP per head: $27,690 (PPP: $31,430)
A coalition of centre-left parties wasset to form the government after theirstrong showing in Slovenia’s electionof September 2008, and to press aheadwith a consensus-led platform of socialreforms, though at a slow pace. Growthwill be below the high rates enjoyedin recent years, but still respectable ataround 3%.
To watch
: Foreign fields. Teams from 30countries will compete in the 56th WorldPloughing Contest in September.
GDP growth: -0.6%GDP: $1,581bn (PPP: $1,470bn)Inflation: 3.0%Population: 45.8mGDP per head: $34,540 (PPP: $32,120)
Tax cuts and higher public spendingmay cushion the blow delivered by thecollapsing property bubble in 2007-08,but the economy is still likely to shrink.The government’s pump priming willshow up in a sharply deterioratinghas come at the cost of loose budgetcontrol, unsustainable wage increasesand a growing current-account gap. Therate of growth will ease in 2009. Theslowdown is likely to be modest, butcould sharpen if external conditions getmuch worse.
GDP growth: 4.0%GDP: $1,680bn (PPP: $2,310bn)Inflation: 11.5%Population: 141.4mGDP per head: $11,880 (PPP: $16,330)
The campaign to recover nationalpride and influence has been a roaringsuccess within Russia’s borders, buthas raised alarms—as the invasion of Georgia in 2008 attests—in the widerworld. Russian adventurism is notover, although it will bring increasingcosts as investors take fright. With theoil bonanza fading as prices fall andproduction flattens, the governmentwill face a tougher economic outlook.The current-account surplus will shrink,growth will slow and inflation willremain a concern. The banks and thecurrency will be vulnerable to a furtherdownturn in the financial environment.
To watch
: Two’s a crowd. Vladimir Putinhas assumed increased powers asRussia’s prime minister but its president,Dmitry Medvedev, has more, and willfight back if Mr Putin goes too far.
GDP growth: 5.0%GDP: $100bn (PPP: $130bn)Inflation: 4.2%Population: 5.5mGDP per head: $18,270 (PPP: $23,720)
Slovakia adopts the euro on January 1st,though interventionist policies designedto restrain inflation and maintaincompetitiveness within the euro areacould raise hackles in Brussels. Theslowdown in the economy that beganin 2008 will continue as export demandand consumer spending slacken.Political tensions could tear apart thethree-party ruling coalition, thoughDirection-Social Democracy, the partyas the economy feels the effects of the global recession. Elections in late2008 yielded a four-party centre-rightcoalition, but promised no respite fromthe instability that characterised theprevious government.
GDP growth: 0.7%GDP: $881bn (PPP: $702bn)Inflation: 1.7%Population: 16.5mGDP per head: $53,440 (PPP: $42,590)
The main political challenge for theprime minister, Jan Peter Balkenende,will be to hold together his three-partycoalition government. The conflictingpriorities of the two leading parties willlimit tax and labour reforms. Slowingdemand among trading partners anddeclining consumer confidence at homewill keep growth at a pedestrian 0.7%.
To watch
: Resurgent right. RitaVerdonk and her fledgling Proud of theNetherlands party will compete with thelonger-standing Party for Freedom for arobust anti-immigrant voter base.
GDP growth: 1.5%GDP: $474bn (PPP: $281bn)Inflation: 2.9%Population: 4.9mGDP per head: $97,730 (PPP: $57,940)
Growing public discontent maypersuade the Socialist Left Partyand the Centre Party to abandon thecoalition government before electionsin September, leaving the Labour Partyalone in a minority administration.Even if they don’t, a minority Labourgovernment is the most likely electionoutcome. Slower wage gains will hurtconsumers and weaker export demandwill limit investment, but oil revenue willkeep the economy afloat.
To watch
: Brussels backlash. If trade unions succeed in derailing acommitment to open services to greaterEU competition, Norwegian exportersmay face retaliation from Brussels.
GDP growth: 3.8%GDP: $558bn (PPP: $723bn)Inflation: 3.8%Population: 38.1mGDP per head: $14,640 (PPP: $18,980)
The prime minister, Donald Tusk, andhis centre-right Civic Platform (PO)will continue to head a mostly stablegovernment. But resistance by thepresident, Lech Kaczynski, to key policyinitiatives will limit the scope for taxand spending reform. Special pleadingfrom the PO’s partner, the PolishPeasants’ Party, is another brake onpolicymaking; the PO could be runninga minority government before 2009 isout. Economic growth will slow onlymoderately as trade shifts towards theEU’s better-performing recent members.
GDP growth: 0%GDP: $242bn (PPP: $248bn)Inflation: 2.2%Population: 10.7mGDP per head: $22,680 (PPP: $23,250)
The Socialist Party (PS) government willpress on with a wide-ranging reformof the public sector that has deliverednotable budget savings. But the paceof change will slow as the politicalfocus shifts to elections towards theend of 2009 and the prospect of moreanti-reform protests becomes lesspalatable. The PS is well placed toexploit opposition weakness and win re-election. The economy will suffer amid awider EU and global slump.
GDP growth: 4.8%GDP: $202bn (PPP: $300bn)Inflation: 5.4%Population: 21.5mGDP per head: $9,400 (PPP: $13,850)
Elections in late 2008 were likelyto yield an alliance between theincumbent National Liberal Party andthe opposition Social Democratic Party,but only after some noisy horsetrading.The new team, whatever its shape,will have to impose an austerity plan.An economic surge in recent years
Back in line
Unemployment, %
051015202594 95 96 97 98 99 00 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09
Baltic survivor, barely
GDP growth, %
Estonia Latvia Lithuania-2024681012
          2          0          0          0          2          0          0          1          2          0          0          2          2          0          0          3          2          0          0          4          2          0          0          5          2          0          0          6          2          0          0          7          2          0          0          8          2          0          0          9
Demetris Christofias
Mehmet Ali Talat
(left),the leaders, respectively, of the Greek and Turkish Cypriotcommunities, may in 2009resolve the dispute that hassplit the island since 1974. Thetwo are ideological cousins: MrChristofias, a Moscow-educatedCommunist, and Mr Talat, aformer leader of the leftist Republican Turkish Party. They also share a tacit mandatefrom their communities and mainland sponsors to agree terms. They openednegotiations in Nicosia’s no-man’s-land in mid-2008; if they pull it off, expectanother meeting soon—this time at the Nobel-peace-prize awards in Oslo.
     2     0     0     9     I     N      P     E     R     S     O     N
Closing the gap
-6-5-4-3-2-10PortugalEuropean Union
Budget balance, % of GDP
2005 2006 2007 20092008

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