Top 10 Countries by GDP Per Capita in 2023
There are many ways to measure different economies against one another, but comparing countries by GDP per capita remains one of the most tried-and-true methods.
GDP per capita attempts to level the playing field by dividing a country’s economic output by its population, effectively giving the average GDP per person. A higher per capita GDP generally corresponds to higher income, consumption levels, and standards of living.
The simplicity of this metric also makes it useful for economists and policymakers to communicate levels of economic well-being to the public.
The above graphic from theWORLDMAPS ranks the top 10 countries by per capita GDP in different regions, using data from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Top 10 Countries by GDP Per Capita in the World
Here are the top 10 countries with the highest nominal GDP per capita in the world in 2023, measured in U.S. dollars:
|Rank||Country||GDP per Capita||Region|
Luxembourg, Ireland, and Norway lead the ranking with more than $100,000 in GDP per capita. Luxembourg is a key financial services center in Europe, Ireland is headquarters to many multinational corporations, and Norway is one of the largest energy exporters in the region, explaining their relative prosperity.
Wealthy countries with smaller populations tend to make up the world’s richest ranks. According to the IMF, Luxembourg only has slightly more than 600,000 people which would be a small city in more populous countries. In fact, in the top 10, only the U.S. and Australia have a population of more than 10 million.
Introducing Purchasing Power Parity
One of the major drawbacks of using GDP per capita is that it doesn’t account for the strength of the local currency versus its exchange rate, the latter of which is heavily influenced by investment flows and demand for the national currency.
Non-tradable goods in a country (haircuts, local transport, schools, etc.) do not get valued when using an exchange-rate conversion. It also doesn’t account for the price differences between countries—for example, fresh vegetables in India are far cheaper than in Canada.
To solve this problem, economists utilize purchasing power parity (PPP) indexes. A key element of these indexes is that they remove these price differences and convert into a common currency in order to show relative economic prosperity. Popular examples are The Economist’s Big Mac index and the Wall Street Journal’s Latte Index.
Nominal vs. PPP-adjusted GDP Per Capita
In the case of GDP, PPP measurements use an “international dollar” which can buy the same amount of goods in any given country as a U.S. dollar could buy in America.
Click to view this graphic in a higher-resolution.
Immediately, there are a few noticeable differences in the top 10 countries by GDP per capita when adjusted for PPP. For one, most countries’ values have increased from their nominal value (except for the U.S. since it is the benchmark).
|Rank||Country||GDP per Capita (PPP)||Region|
|10||🇸🇲 San Marino||$78,930||Europe|
Some countries have switched ranks in the top 10, such as Ireland and Luxembourg. Others have been replaced all together, with Iceland, Denmark, and Australia falling out of the top 10, replaced by Macao, the UAE, and San Marino.
We can also see how the different calculations of GDP per capita affect the rankings in other regions:
|Rank (PPP)||Region||Country||PPP (Intl $)||Nominal ($)|
|1||Americas||🇺🇸 United States||$80,030||$80,030|
|5||Americas||🇧🇸 The Bahamas||$43,910||$35,460|
|6||Americas||🇵🇷 Puerto Rico||$43,840||$38,570|
|8||Americas||🇹🇹 Trinidad & Tobago||$32,050||$19,860|
|9||Americas||🇰🇳 Saint Kitts & Nevis||$29,660||$17,860|
|6||Africa||🇬🇶 Equatorial Guinea||$18,510||$9,780|
|8||Africa||🇿🇦 South Africa||$16,090||$6,490|
|3||Asia||🇲🇴 Macao SAR||$89,560||$50,570|
|4||Asia||🇦🇪 United Arab Emirates||$88,220||$49,450|
|5||Asia||🇧🇳 Brunei Darussalam||$75,580||$35,100|
|6||Asia||🇭🇰 Hong Kong SAR||$74,600||$52,430|
|8||Asia||🇸🇦 Saudi Arabia||$64,840||$29,920|
|10||Asia||🇰🇷 South Korea||$56,710||$33,390|
|5||Europe||🇸🇲 San Marino||$78,930||$52,950|
|2||Oceania||🇳🇿 New Zealand||$54,050||$48,830|
|9||Oceania||🇲🇭 Marshall Islands||$4,670||$5,160|
|10||Oceania||🇵🇬 Papua New Guinea||$4,520||$3,520|
The Americas and Europe
The U.S. leads the Americas in both nominal and PPP-adjusted per capita GDP. However, Canada drops to 3rd place under the new metric, overtaken by Guyana.
In Europe, the usual suspects in the world’s top 10 populate most of the region’s ranks. However, Andorra slides in at 10th in Europe’s richest countries by GDP per capita (PPP). Andorra in particular benefits from its status as a free economic zone—very low or no taxes—and being a tourism hotspot with the sector contributing 80% to its economy.
Singapore, Qatar, Macao, the UAE, and Hong Kong claim top spots as Asia’s richest countries on both lists. Qatar and the UAE benefit from oil being a key export of the region, while Singapore and are top financial centers of Asia. Macao—where gambling is legal—is a massive tourism draw.
On the other hand, Israel and Japan drop out of the richest countries in Asia when using PPP calculations, with countries like Saudi Arabia and Bahrain edging them out.
Africa and Oceania
The island nations of Seychelles and Mauritius lead the ranks of countries by GDP per capita in both nominal and PPP categories on the African continent, also thanks to their booming tourism industries.
Traditional African economic heavyweight South Africa also features in this list of Africa’s richest. But Egypt, the region’s third largest economy, only makes the top 10 countries by GDP when adjusted for PPP, otherwise weighed down by its large population.
And in Oceania, adjusting GDP for purchasing power doesn’t have much effect on the sizable gap between Australia and New Zealand and their smaller island neighbors. But some local economies are noticeably stronger when adjusting for PPP, especially Fiji‘s, which has a GDP per capita (PPP) three times bigger than its nominal value.
The Drawbacks of GDP Per Capita
GDP per capita is a useful measure, but it also comes with its own set of caveats.
For one, it is a measurement of economic output per person, not individual income or household savings. That gives it clear limitations in certain cases, such as in Ireland, where the presence of multinational corporations obfuscates the general output per person.
Secondly, countries with smaller populations do better in the rankings. Most of the world’s biggest economies (China, India, UK, France) do not find themselves in the top 10 ranks.
Finally, other metrics for a good standard of living, some of them intangible in economic terms—human rights, freedom of expression—are not accounted for at all.
This article was published as a part of Visual Capitalist's Creator Program, which features data-driven visuals from some of our favorite Creators around the world.
Visualizing the $105 Trillion World Economy in One Chart
How much does each country contribute to the $105 trillion world economy in 2023, and what nations are seeing their nominal GDPs shrink?
Visualizing the $105 Trillion World Economy in One Chart
By the end of 2023, the world economy is expected to have a gross domestic product (GDP) of $105 trillion, or $5 trillion higher than the year before, according to the latest International Monetary Fund (IMF) projections from its 2023 World Economic Outlook report.
In nominal terms, that’s a 5.3% increase in global GDP. In inflation-adjusted terms, that would be a 2.8% increase.
The year started with turmoil for the global economy, with financial markets rocked by the collapse of several mid-sized U.S. banks alongside persistent inflation and tightening monetary conditions in most countries. Nevertheless, some economies have proven to be resilient, and are expected to register growth from 2022.
Ranking Countries by Economic Size in 2023
The U.S. is expected to continue being the biggest economy in 2023 with a projected GDP of $26.9 trillion for the year. This is more than the sum of the GDPs of 174 countries ranked from Indonesia (17th) to Tuvalu (191st).
China stays steady at second place with a projected $19.4 trillion GDP in 2023. Most of the top-five economies remain in the same positions from 2022, with one notable exception.
India is expected to climb past the UK to become the fifth-largest economy with a projected 2023 GDP of $3.7 trillion.
Here’s a look at the size of every country’s economy in 2023, according to IMF’s estimates.
|Rank||Country||GDP (USD)||% of Total|
|12||🇰🇷 South Korea||$1,722B||1.64%|
|18||🇸🇦 Saudi Arabia||$1,062B||1.01%|
|39||🇿🇦 South Africa||$399B||0.38%|
|41||🇭🇰 Hong Kong||$383B||0.36%|
|46||🇨🇿 Czech Republic||$330B||0.31%|
|51||🇳🇿 New Zealand||$252B||0.24%|
|64||🇵🇷 Puerto Rico||$121B||0.11%|
|77||🇨🇷 Costa Rica||$78B||0.07%|
|80||🇨🇮 Côte d'Ivoire||$77B||0.07%|
|102||🇸🇻 El Salvador||$34B||0.03%|
|110||🇧🇦 Bosnia &|
|116||🇧🇫 Burkina Faso||$21B||0.02%|
|125||🇵🇸 West Bank|
|133||🇧🇳 Brunei Darussalam||$16B||0.01%|
|134||🇲🇰 North Macedonia||$15B||0.01%|
|135||🇬🇶 Equatorial Guinea||$15B||0.01%|
|143||🇰🇬 Kyrgyz Republic||$12B||0.01%|
|151||🇸🇸 South Sudan||$7B||0.01%|
|160||🇸🇱 Sierra Leone||$4B||0.00%|
|168||🇨🇻 Cabo Verde||$2B||0.00%|
|170||🇱🇨 Saint Lucia||$2B||0.00%|
|171||🇹🇱 East Timor||$2B||0.00%|
|174||🇦🇬 Antigua & Barbuda||$2B||0.00%|
|175||🇸🇲 San Marino||$2B||0.00%|
|176||🇸🇧 Solomon Islands||$2B||0.00%|
|180||🇰🇳 Saint Kitts|
|181||🇻🇨 Saint Vincent|
& the Grenadines
|184||🇸🇹 São Tomé|
|187||🇲🇭 Marshall Islands||$0.3B||0.00%|
Note: Projections for Afghanistan, Lebanon, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Syria are missing from IMF’s database for 2023.
Here are the largest economies for each region of the world.
- Africa: Nigeria ($506.6 billion)
- Asia: China ($19.4 trillion)
- Europe: Germany ($4.3 trillion)
- Middle East: Saudi Arabia ($1.1 trillion)
- North & Central America: U.S. ($26.9 trillion)
- Oceania: Australia ($1.7 trillion)
- South America: Brazil ($2.1 trillion)
Ranked: 2023’s Shrinking Economies
In fact, 29 economies are projected to shrink from their 2022 sizes, leading to nearly $500 billion in lost output.
Russia will see the biggest decline, with a projected $150 billion contraction this year. This is equal to about one-third of total decline of all 29 countries with shrinking economies.
Egypt (-$88 billion) and Canada (-$50 billion) combined make up another one-third of lost output.
In Egypt’s case, the drop can be partly explained by the country’s currency (Egyptian pound), which has dropped in value against the U.S. dollar by about 50% since mid-2022.
Russia and Canada are some of the world’s largest oil producers and the oil price has fallen since 2022. A further complication for Russia is that the country has been forced to sell oil at a steep discount because of Western sanctions.
Here are the projected changes in GDP for all countries facing year-over-year declines:
|Country||Region||2022–23 Change (USD)||2022–23 Change (%)|
|🇨🇦 Canada||North America||-$50.17B||-2.3%|
|🇸🇦 Saudi Arabia||Middle East||-$46.25B||-4.2%|
|🇰🇼 Kuwait||Middle East||-$19.85B||-10.8%|
|🇴🇲 Oman||Middle East||-$9.77B||-8.5%|
|🇨🇴 Colombia||South America||-$9.25B||-2.7%|
|🇦🇪 UAE||Middle East||-$8.56B||-1.7%|
|🇿🇦 South Africa||Africa||-$6.69B||-1.6%|
|🇶🇦 Qatar||Middle East||-$5.91B||-2.6%|
|🇮🇶 Iraq||Middle East||-$2.47B||-0.9%|
|🇹🇱 East Timor||Asia||-$1.67B||-45.7%|
|🇬🇶 Equatorial Guinea||Africa||-$1.35B||-8.2%|
|🇾🇪 Yemen||Middle East||-$1.12B||-5.4%|
|🇸🇸 South Sudan||Africa||-$0.86B||-10.9%|
|🇸🇱 Sierra Leone||Africa||-$0.42B||-10.6%|
|🇸🇷 Suriname||South America||-$0.05B||-1.4%|
The presence of Saudi Arabia, Norway, Kuwait, and Oman in the top 10 biggest GDP contractions further highlights the potential impact on GDP for oil-producing countries, according to the IMF’s projections.
More recently, producers have been cutting supply in an effort to boost prices, but concerns of slowing global oil demand in the wake of a subdued Chinese economy (the world’s second-largest oil consumer), have kept oil prices lower than in 2022 regardless.
The Footnote on GDP Forecasts
While organizations like the IMF have gotten fairly good at GDP forecasting, it’s still worth remembering that these are projections and assumptions made at the beginning of the year that may not hold true by the end of 2023.
For example, JP Morgan has already changed their forecast for China’s 2023 real GDP growth six times in as many months after expectations of broad-based pandemic-recovery spending did not materialize in the country.
The key takeaway from IMF’s projections for 2023 GDP growth rests on how well countries restrict inflation without stifling growth, all amidst tense liquidity conditions.
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