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Are you investing in the best economies for your industry's footprint? What factors weigh most heavily on your investment decisions? Is your economy improving in areas that matters most to investors? Economists, investors, and other analysts worldwide rely on multi-economy datasets from the likes of the World Bank and IMF as well as indices to make comparisons across time and countries and address these sorts of questions. The Global Opportunity Index (GOI) developed by the Milken Institute delivers one such index to help guide investment decisions and establish baseline estimates for countries seeking to improve their business environments and attract investment. The GOI considers 51 economic and financial factors aggregated across five categories:

  • Economic Fundamentals focuses on the macro-performance, trade openness, quality and structure of the labor force, and modern infrastructure of the country.
  • Financial Services is mainly based on financial infrastructure evaluation and access to credit.
  • Business Perception compares countries by explicit and implicit business costs (e.g. tax burden, transparency, etc.).
  • Institutional Framework measures the extent to which an individual country’s institutions provide a supportive network to businesses. 
  • International Standards and Policy represents the extent to which a country’s institutions, policies, and legal system facilitate international integration by following international standards.

The annual Global Opportunity Index provides a snapshot of the fundamental factors attributed to a strong business environment and exposes some potentially surprising results.

  • Hong Kong SAR was top ranked overall on the GOI in 2017 and 2018, and even strengthened its performance between 2017 and 2018. According to the weighted ranking, Hong Kong showed particular strength in 2018 within ‘business perception’ based on low implicit and explicit business costs.
  • In contrast, the world’s largest economy, the United States, ranked only 17th overall in 2018 and made the top 10 in only one category: Institutional Framework.
  • Work with the data yourself below and examine areas where Luxembourg (Economic Fundamentals), Australia (Financial Services), countries across Asia (Business Perception), New Zealand (Institutional Framework), and Belgium (Standards and Policy) excel globally.

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