The economy depends primarily on tourism and fisheries. (Gerard Larose)
Seychelles has been listed as the richest country in Africa in the Global Finance Magazine edition released on December 21.
According to the magazine, Seychelles is ranked 56th in the world and tops the list for African countries with a gross domestic product (GDP) and purchasing power parity (PPP) of $39,662.
Seychelles, an archipelago in the western Indian Ocean, has a population of just over 100,000 people, and its economy depends primarily on tourism and fisheries.
In 2023, up to November, Seychelles welcomed 317,915 tourists, contributing $873 million to the economy from January to November, a 4.8 percent increase over the same period in 2022.
The Global Finance Magazine states that “many of the world’s richest countries are also the world’s smallest: the pandemic and the global economic slowdown barely made a dent in their huge wealth.”
It added that while a country’s gross domestic product (GDP) represents the total value of goods and services produced, dividing this output by the number of full-time residents yields a more accurate estimate of a country’s relative wealth.
“While gross domestic product (GDP) measures the value of all goods and services produced in a nation, dividing this output by the number of full-time residents is a better way of determining how rich or poor one country’s population is relative to another’s,” it added.
To obtain a more accurate picture of a country’s average standard of living by accounting for inflation rates and the cost of local goods and services. The resulting figure is known as purchasing power parity (PPP).
“Should we then automatically assume that in nations where PPP is particularly high that the overall population is visibly better off than in most other places in the world? Not quite. We are dealing with averages and within each country, structural inequalities can easily swing the balance in favour of those who are already advantaged,” said the magazine.
Neighbouring island Mauritius is the second richest African nation and is 66th on the global ranking followed by Libya at 73rd.
The top three richest nations are the Republic of Ireland followed by Luxembourg, Singapore and Qatar.
At the other end of the spectrum are South Sudan, Burundi and the Central African Republic.