By. Emma Nowaczyk
Population: 23.06 million (2013)
Seven Major Sources of Economic Progress
Australia has a stable political environment with well-established and transparent political processes, a strong legal system, and a professional bureaucracy. Anti-corruption measures are generally effective in discouraging bribery of public officials. Australia’s judicial system operates independently and impartially. Property rights are secure, and enforcement of contracts is reliable. Expropriation is highly unusual
Australia emerged from the global recession relatively unscathed, but stimulus spending by the previous Labor government generated a fiscal deficit. Australia is internationally competitive in services, technologies, and high-value-added manufactured goods. Mining and agriculture are important sources of exports
Limits on Government Regulation
The top individual income tax rate is 45 percent, and the top corporate tax rate is 30 percent. Other taxes include a value-added tax and a capital gains tax. Total tax revenues equal about 27 percent of the domestic economy. A controversial carbon tax has been repealed. Government expenditures equal 35.7 percent of the economy, and public debt is equivalent to less than 30 percent of GDP.
Banking regulations are sensible, and lending practices have been relatively prudent. Monetary stability is well maintained, with inflationary pressures under control. A well-functioning independent judiciary ensures strong protection of property rights, and corruption has been minimal.
*Australia’s economic freedom score is 81.4, making its economy the 4th freest in the 2015 Index.
*Australia is ranked 4th out of 42 countries in the Asia–Pacific region.