prosperous countries in the world
. Known for its rich history, Italy has the 8th largest economy in the world and is one of the founding members of the European Union.
. A formidably resilient country located in Central Europe, Czech Republic has rebounded from its oppressive past and today enjoys a well developed economy centered around its capital city of Prague.
. Another EU member state, like the Czech Republic, Spain has also had a rocky past but after the overthrow of its dictatorship in 1975 it rebounded and up until 2008 had one of the strongest economies in Europe.
. Although both mainland China and Taiwan claim to be the real China, Taiwan has managed to fare much better than its significantly larger counterpart.
. Another European country that made significant strides in recent years, Slovenia has become a member of both the EU and NATO since gaining its independence.
. Once upon a time Hong Kong was a region dominated by farmers and fishermen. Today it is a fusion of Chinese and Western influences all crammed together into one of the worlds most dynamic metropolises.
. Emerging from the destruction of World War II, France has become one of the most important players on the world stage.
. Since the end of World War II it has become the worlds third largest economy and Japan is a major source of global capital and credit.
. Known for its strict laws, Singapore is a wealthy city state located on an island just off the coast of Malaysia.
. Hosting the capital of the European Union and the headquarters of NATO, Belgium is a multi-linguistic and diverse society that has come to enjoy a very high standard of living since the end of World War II.
. Europes most industrialized and most populous country is well known for its technological, scientific, and cultural achievements.
. Famous for its mountainous countryside, this country at the heart of Europe is home to numerous international organizations.
. Playing an important role in international affairs, the UKs global influence has declined following two world wars and decolonization, but it remains a military and economic power.
. This sparsely populated country is well known for its volcanoes, geysers, and prosperous economy.
. Although Ireland took a hit during the global financial crisis, prior to that it was so prosperous that it was even labeled the Celtic Tiger.
. The worlds largest economic and military power, the United States accounts for 25% of the entire worlds GDP.
. With a name that reflects its position (one fourth of the country is below sea level), the Netherlands are well known for their powerful economy and high standard of living.
. Long standing neutrality and a strong financial sector has turned Switzerland into an extremely wealthy country.
. Ever since the creation of NAFTA (North American Free Trade Alliance), Canada has experienced a trade boom and enjoys the worlds largest trading relationship with its powerful neighbor to the south. This, along with immigration, has helped make Canada one of the worlds richest nations.
. Low unemployment, a strong economy, an advanced welfare system, and one of the highest standards of living in the world make Sweden a leader in numerous categories.
. A wealthy Pacific nation, its economy is dominated by agriculture, manufacturing, and tourism.
. According to income, human development, healthcare, and civil rights, Australia ranks as one of the top places to live on Earth.
. With heavy spending on education, research, and training, Finland has one of the best qualified work forces in the world.
. Although it is a small country, Denmark has always had a significant impact internationally. Domestically it is well known for its highly modern economy and advanced social welfare system.
. Perhaps not surprisingly a Nordic country tops the list. And thanks in large part to oil revenues, Norway enjoys one of the highest standards of living in the world.