MEDIA RELEASE: Australia ranked #17 worldwide in global sharing economy index, Iceland tops the list.

The Australian Taxpayers’ Alliance (ATA) today welcomed the launch of the Timbro Sharing Economy Index from Swedish think tank Timbro – a first-of-its-kind global index for the sharing economy which compares 213 countries. “The index has been compiled using traffic volume data and scraped data and provides unique insight into the driving factors behind the peer-to-peer economy”, says head researcher Alexander Funcke, Ph.D. at the University of Pennsylvania. Iceland, the Turks and Caicos Islands, Montenegro, Malta, and New Zealand top the list. Australia comes in at 17th place.

"That Australia is ranked 17th, behind the likes of New Zealand, Ireland and Portugal, shows there is immense room for improvement.", said Satya Marar, Director of Policy at the ATA. "Aggressive attempts by state governments to crack down on short-term homestays by restricting a family's ability to lend out a room for some supplemental income and moves like NSW's surcharge on ride-sharing services are shameful attacks which undermine Australia's performance while serving special interests such as the taxi lobby and multinational hotel chains. The sharing economy drives innovation and provides prosperity and income to millions of ordinary people worldwide. A failure to foster Australia's sharing economy is a failure to deliver on Canberra's innovation agenda."

“Generally, countries with a mature Internet infrastructure and a tourism-fueled economy have large sharing economies. Consider Iceland. As the Icelandic economy was recovering from the financial crisis, the country saw a spike in tourism. The sharing economy grew rapidly to meet the demand, in a way that is hard to imagine a traditional tourist industry could have done”, says Alexander Funcke.

The largest company in the data set is Airbnb, with almost 1.5 million suppliers judged to be active in an average week. Out of the 286 companies analyzed in the study, one-third supply housing.

“The study shows that the same economic freedom indicators that predict a large traditional economy are also significant predictors for the size of the sharing economy. This goes against the hypothesis that the sharing economy mainly serves to avoid taxes and regulations”, says Karin Svanborg-Sjövall, CEO of Timbro.


  1. Iceland
    2. Turks and Caicos Islands
    3.         Malta
    4.         Montenegro
    5.         New Zealand
    6.         Croatia
    7.         Faroe Islands
    8.         Denmark
    9.         Aruba
    10.       Ireland

Download the Timbro Sharing Economy Index here. Watch the launch live on Facebook here.

The Australian Taxpayers' Alliance is a 75,000+ member grassroots public advocacy group standing for taxpayers’ welfare, accountable government and a roll-back of the nanny state.

Timbro was founded in 1978 and is the largest free market think tank in the Nordics. Its mission is to advocate in favor of free enterprise, individual freedom, and an open society. Each year Timbro publishes two indices in English: Timbro Authoritarian Populist Index, which maps the rise of populist parties in Europe, and as of 2018, the Timbro Sharing Economy Index. Timbro is part of the European think tank network Epicenter and is also closely connected to the Atlas Network in the United States.

The following think-tanks and taxpayers’ advocacy groups are collaborating on the launch of the index: Americans for Tax Reform (US), Australian Taxpayers' Alliance (Australia), CAAS (Serbia), Center for Indonesian Policy Studies (Indonesia), Civil Development Forum (Poland), IDEAS (Malaysia), IDEAS (Costa Rica) and Institute for Market Economics (Bulgaria).


Join ATA on Social Media:

Share our message of less taxes,
regulation and wasteful spending