The global financial crisis slowed overall global economic growth for a number of years, however, some countries never felt the impact as hard. Instead, their GDP levels stabilized and per capita income increased. These top 10 richest countries have done well in the past decade and their fortunes improve with each passing year.

#10. Austria


The alpine nation has a population of about 8.5 million people with a healthy per capita income of $39,711, which is about four times higher than the per capita income for the average person globally.

Its robust service sector and its proximity to Germany provide a ready market for its steel, iron and agricultural products. The Capital city, Vienna is the fifth richest metropolis in Europe behind Hamburg, London, Luxembourg, and Brussels.

#9. Ireland


The Emerald Isle has a per capita income of about $39,999 with a population of about 4.8 million people. The main industries that boost its economy are textiles, mining, food production, staple products in any economy.

In OECD (Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development) rankings, Ireland actually places 4th overall.

#8. Netherlands

With 16.8 million people, and a per capita GDP of $42,447, the Dutch are more than just a tulip country. Its success comes from three key sectors: mining, agriculture, and manufacturing.

Many people do not know that the Netherlands is actually a kingdom of four countries: Aruba, Curaçao, the Netherlands and Sint Maarten but the Netherlands makes up 98% of the total land area in the Kingdom.

#7. Switzerland

The GDP per Swiss citizen is $46,424. Swiss banking and financial institutions keep this country and its economy afloat. It is important to note that some of the wealthiest people and companies in the world own Swiss bank accounts and therefore Switzerland has excess capital to use for investment purposes.

Zurich and Geneva, Switzerland’s most well known cities, have consistently ranked among the top ten highest living standard cities in the world.

#6. The United States

United States

While most nations on the list have small populations (relatively), it is impressive that the world’s largest economy, the United States, can maintain a per capita GDP of $47,084, considering its population of over 310 million people. Reasons behind its success include its large domestic automotive industry, technological sector that foster innovation, and a system of democracy that protects entrepreneurial and intellectual property rights.

#5. Singapore

This tiny city-state has a per capita income of $56,797, which is five times the average per capita income for an ordinary individual in the world. The basis of Singapore’s wealth is its financial services sector, a chemical export industry, and its liberal economic policies that encourage growth and innovation. Singapore has the second busiest port in the world, exporting $414 billion of goods in 2011 alone.

#4. Norway

This Nordic nation’s per capita GDP of $56,920 allows its 4.97 million people to reap the benefits of a small yet robust economy. Driven by fishing, natural resources, and major petroleum exploration, Norway is the eighth largest exporter of crude oil, 9th largest exporter of refined oil, and 3rd largest exporter of natural gas in the world.

#3. The United Arab Emirates

United Arab Emirates

This Middle Eastern federation of emirates has a land area of about 32,278 sq. miles, which means it could easily fit within New York State (54,556 sq. miles). With a population of 9.2 million people, it’s a bit more populated than the state of New Jersey.

A third of the $57,744 per capita economy comes from oil revenues, while the service sector and telecommunications also contribute significantly. The UAE is the second largest economy in the Arab world after Saudi Arabia.

#2. Luxembourg

A symbol of wealth, number two on the list has a per capita GDP of $89,862, which is nine times the world average. The backbone of this strong economy is its vibrant financial sector, prudent fiscal policies, and dynamic industrial and steel sectors. Banking in Luxembourg is the largest sector of its economy with an asset base of over $1.24 trillion alone.

#1. Qatar

Qatar ranks number one on the list of the top 10 richest nations because of its high GDP per capita of $91,379, which is just $8,621 shy of $100,000. Qatar has a well developed oil exploration industry where the petroleum industry accounts for 70% of its government revenue, 60% of its GDP and 85% of its export earnings. Because of its wealth and economic success, it has been chosen as the host of the 2022 FIFA World Cup, the first Arab nation to ever hold this role.