How do your country's property rights rank? (US barely in top 20)
According to the 2010 Index of Economic Freedom (compiled by both the Wall Street Journal and the Heritage Foundation), property and land rights in the United States rank 19th out of 184 examined countries.
New Zealand is the top-ranked. Their judiciary is independent, and property contracts are notably secure. In China, property contracts are strongly protected. In Ireland, secured interests in property, both chattel and real estate, are recognized and enforced. An efficient, non-discriminatory legal system is accessible to foreign investors to protect and facilitate acquisition and disposition of all property rights.
Then there are countries at the other end of the spectrum.
Zimbabwe's government’s growing control of the economy puts many investments, particularly in real property, at risk. The United Nations estimates that the government’s Operation Restore Order caused more than 700,000 persons to lose their homes, their means of livelihood, or both. Many of the confiscated properties had proper titles. The executive branch strongly influences the judiciary and openly challenges court outcomes. Corruption and expropriation are common. And North Korean property rights are simply not guaranteed. Almost all property, including nearly all land property, belongs to the state, and the judiciary is not independent.
The countries with the highest property rights score:
- New Zealand
- Hong Kong
- The Netherlands
The countries with the lowest property rights score:
- Republic of Congo
- Sierra Leone
- North Korea
- Bosnia and Herzegovina
Property Rights: Identity, Dignity, and Opportunity for All competition semi-finalists announced! Vote for the best, innovative solutions that strengthen property rights in order to unleash economic and social opportunity. The 8-10 semi-finalists that receive the most votes will become the finalists.Vote here.