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Mauritius maintains top rank in African economic freedom
March 18, 2018, 12:19 pm

Mauritius maintained its first position among nations in sub-Saharan Africa in the latest Index of Economic Freedom published by the Heritage Foundation. Mauritius with a score of 75.1 ranked 21 among 180 countries and was labeled as a ‘mostly free’ economy.

Mauritius made marginal gains in score in government integrity and property rights indicators from the previous year’s ranking, while holding on to its scores in having an efficient and transparent regulatory environment that supported relatively broad-based economic development, its competitive tax rates, prudent banking practices and a fairly flexible labor code that facilitated private-sector growth.

According to the 2018 Index, in Sub-Saharan Africa most of the 47 graded nations are "mostly unfree", and more than half of the world's ‘repressed’ economies, 12 out of 21, are in Sub-Saharan Africa.

The Index of Economic Freedom launched in 1995 studies economies throughout the world and provides in-depth analysis of each country's political and economic developments. The Index groups the world's countries into five regions: America, Asia-Pacific, Europe, Middle East/North Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa.

It measures economic freedom on 12 quantitative and qualitative factors, grouped into four broad categories: Rule of Law (property rights, government integrity, judicial effectiveness); Government Size (government spending, tax burden, fiscal health); Regulatory Efficiency (business freedom, labor freedom, monetary freedom); and Open Markets (trade freedom, investment freedom, financial freedom). The Index measures the scores on a scale of 100 points classified as "free" ( combined scores of 80 or higher); "mostly free" (70-79.9); "moderately free" (60-69.9); "mostly unfree" (50-59.9); or "repressed" (under 50).

Among the 180 countries ranked, scores improved for 102 countries and declined for 75. According to the Index, Hong Kong and Singapore each logged increases in their Index scores, finishing first and second in the rankings for the 24th consecutive year. Three other frequent top finishers, New Zealand 3rd globally, Switzerland 4th and the United Kingdom 8th also witnessed a rise in their scores.

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