Economic Freedom & Wealth Essay

1510 Words Dec 16th, 2011 7 Pages
Economic Freedom and Wealth Economic freedom is the ability for an individual to prosper with minimal intervention from government. In an economically free society, individuals are empowered to succeed or fail based on their own individual abilities. Higher levels of economic freedom lead to higher levels of economic growth and income. The level of economic freedom varies among different regions and countries across the globe. Thus, levels of prosperity and wealth also vary widely across the globe. The Heritage Foundation, in cooperation with The Wall Street Journal, researches several factors to measure economic freedom across the globe. The Foundation issues the results of their research in the Index of Economic Freedom. The Foundation …show more content…
Many countries with policies similar to China also have high rates of bribery and corrupt bureaucrats. In other, more democratic countries such as the US, starting a business is a simpler process and just requires the right capital expenditures. “Economic freedom is highly correlated with societies’ openness to entrepreneurial activity that creates new jobs and increases opportunity and choice for individuals in advancing their own well-being (Miller, 2011).
Trade Freedom Trade freedom is a highly important factor in determining economic freedom and wealth. No one single country has the resources required to sustain the current standards of living in developed or developing nations. Trade requires specialization according to a country’s comparative advantage. Specialization allows the most efficient and effective use of a country’s scarce resources, whether that be natural resources or labor resources. The Index shows the economic benefits of specialization and trade. “Trade freedom reflects an economy’s openness to the import of goods and services from around the world and the citizen’s ability to interact freely as buyer or seller in the international marketplace” (Miller and Kim, 2011). Tariffs, export taxes, trade quotas, trade bans, and other trade restrictions all hinder the free flow of foreign and domestic commerce. Tariffs and export taxes increase prices to both
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