In 2007, tiny Liechtenstein ranked first in the world in terms of GDP per capita. Then he was pushed aside, but still, according to the UN, the principality does not fall further than 2-3 places in the ranking. How did it happen that a tiny Alpine principality without natural resources with a population like a small provincial town became one of the richest countries in terms of per capita?
Streets of the capital of Liechtenstein – Vaduz
The entire economy of Liechtenstein can be conditionally divided into three large groups: agriculture, engineering and services. Agriculture requires large areas to grow grain or fruits and vegetables, and Liechtenstein has only 160 square kilometers. Is that the vineyards occupy a significant part of the land.
Interesting wines are made from grapes in Liechtenstein, but still we can’t talk about some kind of mass export due to too small volumes. I will write about the wines of Liechtenstein separately, but for now let's move on to mechanical engineering.
Vineyards of Vaduz
In Liechtenstein there are several precision engineering factories whose products are exported. But mostly these are Swiss firms that simply place their business in a neighboring state due to more attractive tax rates.
Tourism dominates the service sector, but again, even compared to neighboring Switzerland, the tourist flow is much lower here. So where does the money come from, gentlemen?
The fact is that Liechtenstein is an offshore zone that is extremely attractive for foreign business. More than seventy thousand companies are registered in the country, that is, almost two companies for every citizen of the country.
Taxes here are low because the whole country is offshore, but they are there. The tax on net profit here is only 3%, but these three percent are enough for a well-fed life for all citizens of the country. They did not even want to issue their own currency. Why, if you can just use the francs of the neighboring stable in all respects Switzerland? ! In the near future I will tell you a lot more interesting things about Liechtenstein and neighboring countries.