Nov 18th 2013 | From The World In 2014 print edition
Africa and Asia share the honours in the top 12, but the list of the world’s fastest-growing economies in 2014 lacks a heavyweight—China, long a fixture, is absent now that it is a slower-growing, middle-income country. The top growers are here because of war (or rather peace), natural resources or gambling. South Sudan, which split from Sudan in 2011, has room to grow, supported by oil reserves. Mongolia is buoyed by a mining boom, while Sierra Leone, Turkmenistan, Timor-Leste and Zambia are favoured by what they extract from below—mainly iron ore, gas, oil and copper, respectively. Bhutan’s boon is hydroelectricity exports to India; Macau’s is its casinos. Libya and Iraq are rebuilding after conflict, though stability remains elusive. What most of these countries have in common is size, or lack of it. The fastest five will have a combined 2014 GDP of $130bn, about 1/80th of China’s economy.