The Czech Republic was ranked as the 22nd most economically free country among the 162 countries in the world in 2018 (based on 2017 data), according to the Economic Freedom of the World Index published by Canadian institute Fraser.
“The relatively good position of the Czech Republic is more a reflection of the catastrophic situation in the rest of the world than of the fundamental liberal progress of the Czech economy,” said Chief Economist of Natland investment group Petr Barton to the Czech News Agency (CNA).
While in overall regulation and foreign trade the country received the 18th and 23rd places, respectively, in the size of the government it ended up 71st, down from 66th in 2017. “Here I see the greatest room for improvement, mostly because we are at the peak of the business cycle, and in the event of a downturn in economic activity, the size of the government always increases,” Barton added, CNA cited.
The most economically free country is Hong Kong, while Venezuela remained the least free in the world. The index has been published since 1996. It consists of five indicators relating to the size of the state sector, the rule of law, international trade, country's currency environment, the inflation environment and overall regulation.