According to the economist pocket world in figures guide for 2014 Monaco has the highest GDP per head $171,465, it is the 248th largest territory in the world but has the highest population density compared to the rest of the world. Monaco also boasts as 2012 the highest life expectancy which is 89.7 years. This means that for a small country... it is extremely active, safe, healthy and wealthy. What makes it such a great little gem of a nation?
Monaco is a constitutional monarchy and as such is its own sovereign state. This enables it to sliver around some of the international tax standards. Monaco has literally no income tax and has extremely low taxes on capital and revenue for businesses. This makes the country a hotspot for the wealthy, who normally pay much higher income tax elsewhere, and a great place for companies and banks to base themselves. Formula 1 drivers from the likes of Jenson to Hamilton and tennis star Novak have moved to Monaco. As Monaco is a small country with very wealthy monarchs it would seem a good idea for it to become a tax haven and it has bought the nation a rich economy, diverse and unique residents and of course investors.
Other countries such as Cyprus and Liechtenstein are tax havens. Liechtenstein has the second highest GDP per head behind Monaco.
Notice that whilst tax havens are great for small countries which have great climates, location relative to other rich countries and an easily manageable political system and population..... they are highly dangerous for bigger countries (with more people etc.) and tax havens anywhere could pose as economic threats to other countries. Large corporations who are based in tax havens could reduce large amounts of tax revenue for their home nations which could go towards national healthcare, transport or paying off debt. Any poor inhabitants will be at a greater disadvantage. If you are wealthy and like to avoid tax.... I guess Monaco is a superb location.
Beautiful, luxurious and unique scenery
Being a tax haven is not enough to reel in huge foreign capital and big hit celebrities... like all big money players they like to work and live in style. Monaco has just that from one of the biggest glamorous property markets in the world to great leisure resorts and blissful landscapes. It also has squeaky clean streets!
The natural aura of Monaco tied in with the incoming wealth has really sparkled up the architecture and recreational zones. Who wouldn't want to drive their classic cars around this slick city?
Long life expectancy, great healthcare and no stress from income tax
As you know from the introduction that the residents of Monaco are expected to live up to 89.7 years, this is 6 more than the Japanese life expectancy (which is pretty darn impressive). This is probably down to the Mediterranean lifestyle which easy going on the cardiovascular system, a diet consisting of vibrant fruits, olive oil, seeds, nuts and healthy meats. What is also a big factor is that most of the residents of Monaco are wealthy and money buys better private healthcare (Monaco has the highest hospital bed to resident ratio in the world), better gyms, personal trainers and more time to spend with the family in nice places.
The nation is also one of the safest in the world and the police are said to be extremely efficient in dealing with crime. This supposed fact could lead to a safer feeling for the residents which could reduce stress and other worries.
Let's not forget the Grand Prix and the Monte Carlo casino which brings thousands of tourists each year and also big big money.
Monaco seems to be a very successful nation, but it nearly all rests on its tax haven status. As long as it has this status it will keep bringing in more wealthy residents.... which could lead to the nation becoming one big corporate island.