Freest Countries 2020

Determining which countries’ citizens have the most freedom can be difficult to do so objectively. However, certain indices can be used to determine which countries have the highest level of human freedom. Human freedom recognizes the dignity of individuals and is inherently valuable, playing a vital role in human progress.

The Cato Institute, the Fraser Institute, and the Liberales Institut at the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom co-published the Human Freedom Index Report for 2018. The Human Freedom Index helps observe relationships between freedom and other social and economic phenomena.

To determine each country’s freedom rank, each country is given a rank for Personal Freedo and Economic Freedom.

Personal Freedom is the freedom of an individual to have freedom of opinion and expression, equality before the courts, security of private property, and freedom to come and go. The First Amendment of the Bill of Rights in the United States Constitution lists several personal freedoms that US citizens have the right to.

Economic freedom, also known as economic liberty, consists of personal choice, voluntary exchange, freedom to compete in markets, and protection of person and property. Economic freedom allows people to prosper in a country without intervention from the government or economic authority. Economic freedom can be seen in capitalism or “laissez-faire” economies, where means of production are privately owned and the government has little to no control over businesses.

The Human Freedom Index Report gave more than 160 countries a rank in all three categories to determine which countries were the freest in the world. The country with the highest rank for the personal freedom index was the Netherlands, followed closely by Norway, Sweden, and Denmark. Hong Kong had the highest economic freedom index, followed closely by Singapore. For overall human freedom, New Zealand came in first, closely followed by Switzerland and Hong Kong.

The table below has each country’s rank for the Personal Freedom Index, Economic Freedom Index, and Human Freedom Index.

Country Freedom Rank Personal Freedom Index Economic Freedom Index Human Freedom Index Population 2020
New Zealand19.288.498.894,822,233
Switzerland29.198.398.798,654,622
Hong Kong38.588.978.787,496,981
Australia49.187.988.5825,499,884
Canada59.157.988.5737,742,154
Denmark69.337.778.555,792,202
Netherlands69.47.718.5517,134,872
Ireland88.948.078.54,937,786
United Kingdom8988.567,886,011
Taiwan109.047.898.4723,816,775
Finland109.297.658.475,540,720
Norway109.347.68.475,421,241
Germany139.247.698.4683,783,942
Estonia149.017.868.441,326,535
Luxembourg159.267.68.43625,978
Austria169.257.588.419,006,398
Sweden179.337.448.3910,099,265
United States178.758.038.39331,002,651
Malta198.987.738.35441,543
Lithuania208.827.868.342,722,289
Czech Republic219.037.568.2910,708,981
Portugal229.047.518.2810,196,709
Latvia238.857.648.251,886,198
Romania248.657.698.1719,237,691
Singapore257.488.848.165,850,342
Spain258.767.568.1646,754,778
Iceland279.087.228.15341,243
Belgium278.997.328.1511,589,623
Cyprus308.517.718.111,207,359
Japan318.737.478.1126,476,461
Chile328.227.88.0119,116,201
France328.777.258.0165,273,511
Italy348.697.277.9860,461,826
Slovenia358.827.057.942,078,938
Costa Rica378.177.557.865,094,118
Mauritius377.728.017.861,271,768
Poland398.357.277.8137,846,611
Georgia407.588.027.83,989,167
Bulgaria418.167.417.786,948,445
Hungary428.267.227.749,660,351
Uruguay438.37.167.733,473,730
Croatia448.466.967.714,105,267
Mongolia4587.47.73,278,290
Panama467.727.587.654,314,767
Peru477.727.437.5832,971,854
Albania487.67.547.572,877,797
Israel497.547.497.528,655,535
Bahamas507.457.347.4393,244
Serbia517.856.857.358,737,371
Montenegro527.637.047.34628,066
Cape Verde537.996.687.33555,987
Seychelles547.377.237.398,347
Fiji557.796.797.29896,445
Ghana577.876.67.2431,072,940
Armenia576.917.577.242,963,243
Bosnia And Herzegovina597.866.67.233,280,819
Jamaica607.277.187.222,961,167
Cambodia617.247.177.216,718,965
Greece617.956.467.210,423,054
South Africa637.76.657.1759,308,690
Botswana646.887.437.152,351,627
Belize647.436.867.15397,628
Guatemala666.557.647.0917,915,568
Barbados677.716.437.07287,375
Suriname677.796.367.07586,632
Dominican Republic696.947.187.0610,847,910
El Salvador706.927.157.036,486,205
Rwanda716.477.486.9712,952,218
Paraguay726.976.956.967,132,538
Philippines736.57.346.92109,581,078
Namibia747.396.46.92,540,905
Haiti757.186.516.8511,402,528
Jordan756.247.466.8510,203,134
Bahrain756.147.566.851,701,575
Mexico756.86.96.85128,932,753
Moldova757.066.646.854,033,963
Nicaragua756.437.276.856,624,554
Trinidad And Tobago816.926.736.831,399,488
Kenya826.457.26.8253,771,296
Ecuador837.556.066.8117,643,054
Bhutan836.67.026.81771,608
Indonesia856.387.166.77273,523,615
Uganda856.137.416.7745,741,007
Colombia877.026.56.7650,882,891
Papua New Guinea887.256.256.758,947,024
Burkina Faso887.466.056.7520,903,273
Benin907.55.986.7412,123,200
Kazakhstan906.387.116.7418,776,707
Honduras926.397.066.729,904,607
Nepal926.916.536.7229,136,808
Bolivia927.216.236.7211,673,021
Lebanon956.436.996.716,825,445
Guyana967.046.316.68786,552
Malawi977.455.866.6519,129,952
Thailand986.46.856.6269,799,978
Lesotho1006.696.386.532,142,249
Tanzania1026.136.926.5259,734,218
Madagascar1036.846.196.5127,691,018
Qatar1035.537.496.512,881,053
Senegal1056.776.226.516,743,927
Liberia1066.46.566.485,057,681
Argentina1078.14.846.4745,195,774
Turkey1076.096.846.4784,339,067
Tunisia1096.586.296.4311,818,619
India1106.26.636.411,380,004,385
Malaysia1105.96.926.4132,365,999
Sierra Leone1127.045.756.47,976,983
Laos1135.866.916.397,275,560
Zambia1166.016.616.3118,383,955
United Arab Emirates1175.077.56.299,890,402
Ukraine1186.595.986.2843,733,762
Sri Lanka1196.046.496.2721,413,249
Russia1195.716.836.27145,934,462
Togo1196.735.826.278,278,724
Brazil1236.675.756.21212,559,417
Kuwait1245.636.756.194,270,571
Vietnam1245.976.426.1997,338,579
Tajikistan1245.656.726.199,537,645
Morocco1275.996.376.1836,910,560
Belarus1286.066.236.149,449,323
Oman1295.516.766.135,106,626
Azerbaijan1305.686.496.0810,139,177
Mozambique1306.665.56.0831,255,435
Nigeria1325.826.326.07206,139,589
Guinea Bissau1336.865.256.051,968,001
Mali1346.065.85.9320,250,833
China1355.356.465.911,439,323,776
Niger1375.716.015.8624,206,644
Bangladesh1385.36.35.8164,689,383
Pakistan1405.3265.66220,892,340
Guinea1415.375.935.6513,132,795
Angola1426.115.175.6432,866,272
Zimbabwe1435.176.065.6214,862,924
Cameroon1445.335.825.5826,545,863
Gabon1445.325.845.582,225,734
Saudi Arabia1464.446.525.4834,813,871
Chad1475.515.445.4716,425,864
Mauritania1474.995.965.474,649,658
Myanmar1495.465.425.4454,409,800
Ethiopia1505.065.735.4114,963,588
Central African Republic1525.475.115.294,829,767
Iran1534.536.035.2883,992,949
Burundi1544.415.925.1711,890,784
Algeria1555.284.995.1443,851,044
Egypt1563.895.724.81102,334,404
Sudan1574.255.364.843,849,260
Libya1583.884.744.316,871,292
Iraq1593.125.44.2640,222,493
Venezuela1615.522.884.228,435,940
Syria1622.515.023.7717,500,658