Swiss economy "most liberal" in Europe

A study by the Heritage Foundation, a Washington think tank, and the Wall Street Journal ranks Switzerland first in a list of the most liberal economies of Europe.

This content was published on January 13, 2011 - 16:10 and agencies

Switzerland scored a total of 81.9 points out of a possible 100 in the Index of Economic Freedom and took top spot away from Ireland.

The Swiss result was 0.8 of a point better than the previous year, while Ireland lost two places as a result of the financial crisis.

Worldwide, Hong Kong was ranked first for the 17th time, with a score of 89.7 points. It was followed by Singapore, Australia, New Zealand and Switzerland.

At the other end of the scale, North Korea managed just one point, followed by Zimbabwe (22.1), Cuba (27.7), Eritrea (36.7) and Venezuela (37.6).

The index is based on a number of criteria including business, trade, fiscal and monetary freedoms, as well as property rights and the freedom from corruption.

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