Romania’s overall score is higher than the world average set by the study, taken for 20 years by the Heritage Foundation, in partnership with The Wall Street Journal. Romania, ranked 29th out of the Europe region’s 43 countries, improved in monetary freedom, freedom from corruption, and trade freedom. In the world rankings it is preceded by Bulgaria at 61 and followed by Dominica at 63.

Over the 20-year history of the Index, Romania’s economic freedom score has advanced by about 23 points, the eighth best improvement of any country. It almost made gains in nine of the 10 economic freedoms. “Romania has made tremendous strides in eliminating economically repressive policies,” reads the study. “Structural reforms to enhance regulatory efficiency and market openness have advanced the economy to “moderately free.”

Authors of the study said deeper institutional reforms, particularly related to eradicating corruption and ensuring judicial independence, remain critical to ensuring Romania’s ongoing transition to a more resilient market-oriented economy and to improved economic growth.

The study measures 10 factors of a country’s economic freedom, grouped broadly into four categories. These include: Rule of Law (property rights, freedom from corruption) limited government (fiscal freedom, government spending), regulatory efficiency (business freedom, labor freedom, monetary freedom); and open markets (trade freedom, investment freedom, and financial freedom).


Globally, the rankings were led by Hong Kong, which was followed by Singapore, Australia, Switzerland, New Zealand and Canada. The United States was ranked 12th, while communist nations North Korea and Cuba were the lowest of the listed countries. (source: