The $ 94 trillion global economy in one graph
See the expanded version of this infographic.
Only four countries – the United States, China, Japan and Germany – account for more than half of world economic output by gross domestic product (GDP) in nominal terms. In fact, the GDP of the United States alone is greater than the combined GDP of 170 countries.
How do the different economies of the world compare? In this visualization, we take a look at GDP by country in 2021, using data and estimates from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
An overview of GDP
GDP serves as a general indicator of a country’s economic output. It measures the total market value of final goods and services produced in a country over a period of time, such as a quarter or a year. In addition, GDP also takes into account the output of services provided by the government, such as money spent on defense, health care or education.
Generally speaking, when GDP increases in a country, it is a sign of greater economic activity that benefits workers and businesses (while the reverse is true for a decrease).
The world economy: top 50 countries
Who are the biggest contributors to the global economy? Here is the ranking of the 50 largest countries by GDP in 2021:
|Rank||Country||GDP (T $)||% of world GDP|
|19||Saudi Arabia||0.8 $||0.9%|
|26||🇹🇭 Thailand||$ 0.5||0.6%|
|33||South Africa||$ 0.4||0.4%|
|35||🇩🇰 Denmark||$ 0.4||0.4%|
|38||🇸🇬 Singapore||$ 0.4||0.4%|
|40||Hong Kong SAR||$ 0.4||0.4%|
|43||🇨🇱 Chile||$ 0.3||0.4%|
|46||🇷🇴 Romania||$ 0.3||0.3%|
|47||🇨🇿 Czech Republic||$ 0.3||0.3%|
|49||Pakistan||$ 0.3 *||0.3%|
|50||New Zealand||$ 0.2||0.3%|
* 2020 GDP (latest available) used when IMF estimates for 2021 were not available.
AT $ 22.9 trillion, U.S. GDP makes up about 25% of the global economy, a share that has actually changed dramatically over the past 60 years. The finance, insurance and real estate sectors ($ 4.7 trillion) contribute the most to the country’s economy, followed by professional and business services ($ 2.7 trillion) and government ($ 2.6 trillion) billions of dollars).
The Chinese economy is second in nominal terms, hovering around $ 17 trillion in GDP. It remains the world’s largest manufacturer in terms of production with extensive production of steel, electronics and robotics, among others.
The largest economy in Europe is Germany, which exports around 20% of the world’s motor vehicles. In 2019, global trade accounted for nearly 90% of the country’s GDP.
The world economy: the 50 smallest countries
At the other end of the spectrum are the world’s smallest economies in terms of GDP, primarily developing countries and island countries.
With a GDP of $ 70 million, Tuvalu is the smallest economy in the world. Located between Hawaii and Australia, the largest industry in this volcanic archipelago is based on territorial fishing rights.
In addition, the country derives significant income from its “.tv” web domain. Between 2011 and 2019, he won $ 5 million every year from companies, including Amazon-owned Twitch, to license the Twitch.tv domain name, which is equivalent to around 7% of the country’s GDP.
|🇹🇻 Tuvalu||Oceania||$ 0.07|
|Marshall Islands||Oceania||$ 0.2|
|Cook Islands||Oceania||$ 0.4 *|
|Sao Tome and Principe||central America||$ 0.5|
|🇩🇲 Dominica||Caribbean||0.6 $|
|🇻🇨 Saint Vincent and the Grenadines||Caribbean||0.8 $|
|🇼🇸 Samoa||Oceania||0.8 $|
|Saint Kitts and Nevis||Caribbean||$ 1.0|
|🇬🇩 Granada||Caribbean||$ 1.1|
|🇰🇲 Comoros||Africa||$ 1.3|
|🇸🇨 Seychelles||Africa||$ 1.3|
|Antigua and Barbuda||Caribbean||$ 1.4|
|Solomon Islands||Oceania||$ 1.7|
|🇱🇨 Saint Lucia||Caribbean||$ 1.7|
|🇸🇲 San Marino||Europe||$ 1.7|
|🇨🇻 Cape Verde||Africa||$ 1.9|
|Belize||central America||$ 1.9|
|🇧🇹 Bhutan||Asia||$ 2.5|
|🇨🇫 Central African Republic||Africa||$ 2.6|
|🇸🇷 Suriname||South America||$ 2.8|
|South sudan||Africa||$ 3.3|
|Sierra Leone||Africa||$ 4.4|
|🇧🇧 Barbados||Caribbean||$ 4.7|
|🇲🇪 Montenegro||Europe||$ 5.5|
|Liechtenstein||Europe||$ 6.8 *|
|Guyana||South America||$ 7.4|
|Monaco||Europe||$ 7.4 *|
|🇹🇯 Tajikistan||Asia||$ 8.1|
|🇰🇬 Kyrgyz Republic||Asia||$ 8.2|
* 2019 GDP (latest available) used when IMF estimates for 2021 were not available.
Like Tuvalu, many of the world’s smallest economies are found in Oceania, including Nauru, Palau, and Kiribati. In addition, several of the above countries depend on the tourism industry for more than a third of their employment.
Fastest Growing Economies in the World in 2021
With 123% Projected GDP growth, the Libyan economy is estimated to experience the strongest growth.
Oil propels its growth, with 1.2 million barrels pumped daily in the country. At the same time, exports and a depressed currency are among the main factors in its recovery.
Real GDP growth in 2021 (annual change in%)
|8||🇨🇱 Chile||South America||11.0%|
The economy of Ireland, with a projection 13% real GDP growth, is supported by the world’s largest multinational corporations. Facebook, TikTok, Google, Apple and Pfizer all have their European headquarters in the country, which has a corporate tax rate of 12.5%, about half the global average. But those rates are set to change soon, as Ireland joined the OECD’s agreement on the 15% minimum corporate tax rate that was finalized in October 2021.
Macau’s economy has rebounded after COVID-19 restrictions began to lift, but new thunderstorm clouds are looming on the horizon for the Chinese district. The CCP’s anti-corruption campaign and recent arrests may signal a more strained relationship between mainland China and the world’s largest gaming hub.
Looking to the future of global GDP
The global GDP figure of $ 94 trillion may seem huge to us today, but such a total may seem much smaller in the future.
In 1970, the world economy represented only about 3 trillion dollars of GDP, which is 30 times less than it is today. Over the next thirty years, the world economy is expected to more or less double again. By 2050, global GDP could reach nearly $ 180 trillion.