Through the years, the wealthiest Arab countries have attracted countless visitors from around the world. People love the images of gold buildings, fantastic food, and all the most delicate things in life. However, when talking about the Arab region, one thing comes to most people’s minds first—oil.
Most people recognize this region for its rich oil reserves, and it’s still one of the biggest exporters of this natural resource. In fact, the rich supply of oil is one reason so many countries in this area have earned a spot on the list of the world’s wealthiest nations.
Are you interested in learning more about the richest Arab countries? If so, you are in luck. Here you can find the ten richest Arab countries.
Richest Arab Countries in 2023 (based on GDP per Capita in 2022).
Map created by Mappr with Data from the World Bank.
10. Algeria – 2022 GDP per capita $4,295
Being home to the 10th largest reserve of natural gas in the world has significantly contributed to Algeria’s wealth. It is also the sixth-largest exporter of natural gas. The economy mainly relies on hydrocarbons exports, which handle 60% of the country’s budget revenues and 30% of its GDP.
Algeria’s economy was not always fueled by oil and gas. In fact, until 1962, this country’s economy was mainly based on agriculture, and it complemented the economy of France.
9. Egypt, Arab Republic – 2022 GDP per capita $4,295
With over 80 million people, Egypt is one of the most populous and wealthiest Arab countries today. Most of Egypt’s economic wealth relates to activity on the Nile River Valley, teeming with arable land. Manufacturing, agriculture, and tourism are all important industries for this country. However, it has been impacted recently by political and social uncertainties.
8. Iraq – 2022 GDP per capita $5,937
Iraq, known as the cradle of civilization, has a rich history that spans millennia. Despite the nation’s prolonged periods of war and political instability, it has managed to remain one of the richest Arab countries due to its abundant oil reserves. Iraq is the second-largest producer of crude oil in the OPEC and plays a significant role in the global oil market.
Historically, Iraq’s economy was more diverse, with agriculture playing a crucial role. But with the discovery of oil, the nation shifted its focus.
However, efforts are being made to diversify the economy and reduce the dependence on oil revenue. The ancient city of Babylon, the hanging gardens, and a rich cultural heritage continue to attract tourists, adding to the nation’s GDP.
7. Libya – 2022 GDP per capita $6,716
When talking about rich Arab countries, Libya is an obvious contender and has been for years. It was previously on the list for the wealthiest Arab countries and considered the wealthiest country in Africa. However, the economy has experienced a considerable downturn recently.
The corruption in the area has taken a toll on its financial stability and its overall economy. Additionally, war has also contributed to the economic downturn. Despite these issues, Libya retains great wealth today and ranks amongst the top 120 economies globally.
6. Oman – 2022 GDP per capita $25,057
When you think of the wealthiest Arab country, chances are oil comes to mind right away. You are not wrong. The oil reserves found in Oman have made it one of the wealthiest countries in the world.
Even though the county has the fewest oil reserves in the region, it is in the Persian/Arabian Gulf, which means it has more oil to exploit. Of course, this has greatly assisted the country’s wealth.
5. Bahrain – 2022 GDP per capita $30,152
While Bahrain is considered the fifth most prosperous country in the Arab region, it is ranked amongst the top 50 globally. The economy of this country is thriving thanks to its exports of aluminum, tourist attractions, and natural gas and oil resources.
This country’s GDP is currently higher than Japan, France, the UK, and Canada. Also, the currency used in Bahraini is the second-highest valued currency in the entire world, contributing to its ranking on this list.
4. Saudi Arabia – 2022 GDP per capita $30,436
As you would expect, the economy of Saudi Arabia highly depends on the production and export of petroleum. It is the second-biggest OPEC Member Country.
Saudi Arabia contributes to approximately 18% of the total petroleum production globally, which earns the nation significant respect in the global market. Thanks to the per capita of this country, it is the fourth most prosperous Arab country and ranked 4th in the Arab world.
3. Kuwait – 2022 GDP per capita $43,233
Economic diversity in Kuwait is minimal because the economy primarily depends on crude oil. Some of the most powerful countries in the Arab region surround Kuwait, including Iran, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia.
The strategic location and the massive oil reserves have helped Kuwait rank as the 3rd richest in the Arab world. It’s important to note that in the past, issues related to oil and gas disputes resulted in Kuwait falling slightly on the list of the richest Arab countries.
2. United Arab Emirates – 2022 GDP per capita $53,758
When you hear anything about the United Arab Emirates, chances are you immediately think of elegance and luxury. However, the country is much more than just tourism and lifestyle (which are two of the main reasons it has made it on this list).
According to information from the Dubai Media Office, the financial sector of UAE reports significant growth of 14% year-on-year increase in the total number of active and registered companies in the UAE.
1. Qatar – 2022 GDP per capita $88,046
When it comes to the wealthiest Arab countries, Qatar has been at the top of the list for several years. Of course, you can find this country on virtually any “richest” list you come across in the world.
Not only is Qatar the most prosperous Arab country, but it is also the wealthiest country in the world. However, this is not a massive surprise to many since the population of this country is just over 2.9 million. Qatar has an unemployment rate of under one percent, one of the lowest in the world.
As you can see, the richest Arab countries are diverse and represent some areas with the highest GDP in the region and in the world. This list often changes, but these are the wealthiest countries in the Arab region for 2023.