Why some countries are rich and some are poor

The term rich, I guess, is a relative term. It basically depends on what one considers to be wealth. In Africa, for example, being rich is totally different from what people in the west consider as being wealthy. In this case however, the richness of a country will be looked at from an economic perspective by considering a countries economic position. The reasons as to why some countries are rich while others are poor vary depending on the position, history of the country, resources and other factors that may influence the economic stability of a country. These factors will be addressed in this paper (Paul, R. K. & Maurice, O. 2008).

One of the reasons why some countries are rich while others are poor is corruption. This is Africa’s and other third world countries cancer. The illegal acquisition of wealth and property for ones personal gains has cost many countries some substantial amounts of national income and revenue. The opposite applies for countries where this vice is not rampant.

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The nature of the people in a particular country will also dictate a country’s development state and rate. A good example of this is Japan. The enterprising nature of the Japanese people is what has enabled them to move from a period of rebuilding their country to a position of being among the richest countries in the world. The hardworking nature of individuals in a country reduces the poverty levels in a country. The opposite applies to countries where hard work and determination are not key elements of the country. Literacy level in a country also determines whether or not a country is rich or poor. A country with a high literacy level will be economically stable. The reason for this is that there is qualified and readily available labor in the country.

            In the case where the literacy levels are low, there might be job opportunities but qualified labor is lacking. This affects the productivity level of the country. The political situation in a country plays a major part in the economic position of a particular country. Countries which experience long periods of political instability tend to be poorer than those that have experienced political stability. The reasons for this are obvious. Foreign investors are chased away by cases of political instability. This means that the national income of the country only depends on local investors who have also escaped to other countries due to the political instability (Paul, R. K. & Maurice, O. 2008)..

The final cause of either a rich or a poor country is that of natural resources. Some countries posses natural resources in abundance that are widely required across the world. These countries are mainly the sole suppliers of these resources. For these countries, their income will increase and they will develop their countries. For those that do not have these resources, they will depend on those that have and they will be indebted to countries that can provide them with financial support. Once in debt, a country will always remain poor not until it clears all its debts.


Paul, R. K, Maurice, O. (2008).International Economics: Theory and Policy. London: Published by Addison-Wesley.


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