Sunday, January 08, 2006

Heritage Rankings

The Heritage Foundation recently released its rankings of economic freedom. Of some relevance to this blog: Hong Kong ranked number one (most free economy), Taiwan ranked 37, and China tied Zambia at 111 out of 157 economies graded. The blogosphere has been abuzz since the rankings were released.

Firing the first shot was Sun Bin, who noted that Taiwan has dropped in the rankings since President Chen Shui-bian took office and that Hong Kong has not dropped since the island reverted to PRC control. Specifically, he faults Chen for attempting "active management" of the economy (which results in a low rank for government intervention in the Heritage rankings).

Asiapundit followed-up on Sun Bin's post with a discussion of who, if anyone, deserves the title "communist" out of the CCP, KMT, and DPP.

Michael Turton fired back with a history lesson and charges of an ideological slant.
Heritage's ideas of what constitutes "intervention" are strongly value-laden... In sum, the report's methodology is highly slanted, selective, and obviously right-wing.
Finally, Simon World brings us an article by Jake van der Kamp pointint out that Hong Kong is not the world's freest economy, Somalia is.
We [Hong Kong] have our rating, largely thanks to the approach the foundation has taken, which, whether deliberately or not, happens to emphasise foreign trade and foreign investment over domestic economic considerations. We fit that cookie cutter perfectly.