2008 was a mess. Everything changed from great to being a disaster. The markets were down and most of the world’s leading economies slipped into recession.
For most of the world 2009 is not looking any brighter. The United States, Great Britain, France, Germany and Japan are all expecting a standstill of their economies or a recession.
For the first time in decades we are facing a situation where the fastest growing economies will be countries that are virtually unheard of in the western world.
5 fastest growing economies in 2009
Here is a list of top 5 fastest growing countries as predicted by The Economist.
5. China – 8% GDP Growth
China is the only superpower that makes the list of fastest growing countries in 2009. This second largest exporting country (Germany is no 1) has the world’s largest population of 1.3 billion potential consumers. While the rich world is in recession and Chinese exports are taking a hit – China is relying on the growing demand for products from its own people. Thanks to the expanding middle class Chinese economy is as strong as ever.
4. Malawi - 8.3% GDP Growth
This small southeast African country is one of the poorest in the world. For the last few years it has had a democratic government that is rapidly increasing living conditions throughout the country. In addition to having large uranium deposits Malawi is mostly known as an exporter of tobacco, coffee, sugar and tea.
After president Bingu wa Mutharika started a fertilizer program intended to boost crop production Malawi is doing better than ever. The program has radically improved agriculture and allows to export more goods – thus leaving Malawi unaffected from the global recession.
3. Congo (Brazzaville) – 8.5% GDP Growth
This central African country gets most of its income from selling oil, gas and petroleum. Most people live in the capital Brazzaville or in one of the small cities along the countries one and only 332-mile (534 km) railway.
In 1997 a 5 month civil war erupted in Congo – when it ended, president Sassou Nguesso expressed interest in economic reforms with the intent to take the country out of poverty. This reforms are still taking place today.
2. Angola – 9.8% GDP Growth
Just like in the rest of the world – economy in Angola is actually slowing down. In 2005 and 2006 it boasted with economic growth of around 20%. Almost all of the countries economic growth comes from oil and Angola’s ability to sell more of it every following year.
Angola has increased its oil production so much that as of 2007 it is the largest supplier of oil to China.
1. Qatar – 13.4% GDP Growth
It seems that being one of the richest countries in the world is not enough for Qatar. While being a poor country in the past, Qatar discovered huge reserves of oil and gas in the 1940-s,that completely transformed its economy.
Qatar offers most of its services to its citizens for free and has no income tax. The amount of money they get from selling oil is more than enough for their small yet thriving economy.
Never heard about most of these countries?
Don’t worry – neither have your friends. If you leave China out of this list then the combined gross domestic product for Qatar, Angola, Congo and Malawi is about the same as the GDP of Hong Kong (and Hong Kong is just 1 city – although very large).
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