Switzerland-- the Highest Standard of Living in the World

Tags: Unemployment, Inflation, Gross domestic product

Switzerland has the highest standard of living, trumping Canada, Italy, Argentina, and India. Based on the analysis of the seven aggregate statistics (refer to Appendix “A”), Switzerland leads the other nations by having the highest GDP per capita, lowest government debt and lowest tax revenue as a percentage of GDP, lowest unemployment rate, lowest inflation rate, highest life expectancy, and second highest average level of education. These impressive statistics indicate that the Swiss government is very efficient in performing its duties, resulting in overall prosperity for the nation. This is a major factor in Switzerland’s high standard of living.

In 2004, Switzerland’s central government debt was only 28% of its GDP (The World Bank Group Online, 2008). Maintaining low debt is an essential factor which allows the Swiss government to run much more efficiently than the other nations. Low debt results in less interest to pay off, ultimately resulting in less tax revenue required by the government to fund the nation’s infrastructure. Switzerland’s tax revenue in 2004 was only 10% of its GDP (The World Bank Group Online, 2008). This means, for the citizens of Switzerland, they pay less tax, yet still receive services which are on par or are actually superior to those of the other countries. Paying less tax gives the Swiss higher disposable incomes, and more freedom and flexibility with the use of their money. Having the highest life expectancy, 81.24 in 2005 (The World Bank Group Online, 2008), comes as no coincidence, as the government subsidizes the lower classes’ health insurance, ensuring health care equality within the country (Rovner, 2008). This is made possible because Switzerland has more flexible government funding capabilities since they have low central government debt, and therefore pay less interest. Although Switzerland is regarded as one of the top ten most expensive places to live in the world (Norway “Most Expensive” Place to Live Again,...
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