20/20 and ABC News host (and great friend to reason) John Stossel talks up the connection between economic freedom and rising incomes on a global scale:
"I think one of the best kept secrets is that the world is in the midst of an economic boom, and it is largely driven by increases in economic freedom," says economics professor James Gwartney, director of the Stavros Center for the Advancement of Free Enterprise and Economic Education at Florida State University. "The world has become more free, and, at the same time, growth is soaring to new highs. During 1995 to 2005, the growth rate of per capita GDP in 99 countries for which data are available has increased to 2.2 percent, nearly twice the rate of recent decades. Since 2000, the annual growth rate of per capita GDP has been even more rapid, 3.2 percent."
As the world gets freer, says Gwartney, it gets richer.
More info on the Economic Freedom of the World report, including a searchable database with country-by-country info ranging from Albania to Zimbabwe here.
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