China was the first country to be impacted by COVID-19, and its response framed the context for the rest of the world. Its approach was one that moved to withhold information about the virus, restrict the freedoms of its people, and lock down its economic engine. Such actions are consistent with ranking 90th in the Index for Governance and 159th for Personal Freedom. Subsequently, many other countries responded by severely curtailing civil rights and economic freedoms. But these are not the actions that build prosperity, they are the ones that weaken it.
At a time of crisis, it is our core principles that we should be drawing on — the things we know to be true. It is here that the Index can be a guide, reminding us of what builds and protects prosperity in the most challenging of times. The Index has been purposefully designed to help leaders around the world focus on what needs to be protected and what is of value. During a time of crisis, the Index can equip leaders to ensure that their decisions enable their citizens to flourish.
We know that prosperity is built when: