For the first time, Nigeria recorded a leap on the 2018 Legatum Prosperity Index (LPI) of most prosperous countries in the world.
Nigeria moved up by three points from its 132nd position in 2017 to 129, being the first time the most populous black nation would move up since the inception of the index in 2006.
The LPI is an annual ranking developed by the Legatum Institute, a division of the United Arab Emirates-based private investment firm, Legatum.
The index measures prosperity using nine pillars: economic quality, business environment, governance, personal freedom, social capital, safety and security, education, health and natural environment.
Of these pillars, Nigeria ranked 139, 66, 107, 111, 48, 145, 123,143, 104 positions respectively.
While the giant of Africa rose 12 places on the business environment pillar, it fell one point in safety and security.
“In the overall Prosperity Index rankings, Nigeria has climbed by three positions from 132 to 129 when compared to last year. Since the Prosperity Index began in 2006, Nigeria has moved down the rankings table by five places,” the report read.
“In the Prosperity Pillar rankings, Nigeria performs best on Social Capital and Business Environment and scores lowest on the Safety and Security pillar.
“The biggest positive change, compared to last year, came in Business Environment increasing by 12 places, whereas they dropped one place on Safety and Security.”
Despite Nigeria’s rise on the ranks, the country, however, falls among the 20 least prosperous countries (red zone) and the report says “those in the bottom 20 face significant challenges across all pillars, especially in improving Safety and Security.”
In Sub-Saharan Africa, Nigeria is ranked 25th.
Norway, New Zealand and Finland topped the index, while Yemen, Central African Republic and Afghanistan came last three respectively.
“The measurement of national prosperity is an important task for governments and for those who hold them to account,” the report read.
“Prosperity entails much more than wealth, it reaches beyond the financial into the political, the judicial, and the wellbeing and character of a nation – it is about creating an environment where a person is able to reach their full potential. A nation is prosperous when it has an open economy, inclusive society, strong institutions and empowered people who are healthy, educated and safe. This leads to higher levels of wellbeing.
“The Prosperity Index covers 149 countries. The top 40 most prosperous nations are those that have demonstrated over time how to build prosperity. Those in the bottom 20 face significant challenges across all pillars, especially in improving Safety and Security.
“Prosperity has grown over the last year to its highest ever point. In the last five years, 113 countries have improved their prosperity. In many respects the world is getting better. It is now easier to start a business in many countries.”