How increase GDP in Victoria 3?

One of starting mission in Victoria 3 is about GDP. I want to see how to increase it effectively and at the same time not spoil my income or army. Finally, I’ll pass on tips on what works for me when playing.

My tips continued to come together as I played – here’s a picture from my second playthrough of the game when I played for little Belgium and you can see that GDP will gradually grow. I hope you find my tips helpful.

Belgian GDP after some minutes of playing

If you need more help I have also written a detailed article on how improve the standard of living of your pops, how improve prestige of your country, article about obligations and how to make money in Victoria 3

Invest in your economy

First tip to increase GDP is investing in your economy. You must find which goods your pops needs and after that you want to build some factories and employ them. In order for the overall GDP to grow, we need to keep an eye on the following:

  • There are enough people working in the factory
  • The factory creates efficiently and what you need.
  • The factory does not have expensive inputs

And you have to balance all this – because if the factory has cheap output prices and can’t cover the costs of processing inputs and employees, it will start to run out of stock and once it’s out of money it will stop making/employing…

In order for this factory to grow and improve my GDP I had to get cheaper steel and I have to support them with subsidized and at the same time get sales for them on another market otherwise I would sell cheap

… at the same time, you can’t start a big investment and then find out you have no one to employ. Because then your factories will be empty and there will be no one to work in them, which will lead to the fact that you will have to either subsidize the operation to have higher wages (this costs money) or optimize it to have fewer people working in it so that there are more workers on the market.

How to invest in the economy and boost GDP?

  1. Make sure that you have a properly optimized building sector.
  2. Have money to build and buy resources from the market.
  3. Carefully research what factories and buildings you need to build.

Step 1: Make sure that you have a properly optimized building sector.

A functioning construction sector is a basic thing without which investment cannot be undertaken. So far I have not seen a country I played for with this problem solved. Optimally you want to get to about 20 to 30 building capacity at the start of play if you are small (ie you need to build something). This will then allow you to build faster and therefore grow faster.

Improved construction sector (from 2 to 4)

But beware, just building a construction sector is not enough to accelerate construction. You will also need enough money.

More about construction sector and how use them?

Step 2: Have money to build and buy resources from the market.

The reason is that most of the raw materials are bought from the market and therefore in your costs there will be one big item and that is the construction. In the picture below you can see that I leave about 10.7K on iron and the question is if I could maybe make it cheaper in the foreseeable future to have cheaper buildings, because I subsidize everyone…

… in case your building sector becomes too unbearable and expensive, you can switch it to another type of buildings for a while. But this leads to your building capacity shrinking and then your GDP would not grow faster – but maybe more efficiently.

What switching to another construction sector looks like

Step 3: Carefully research what factories and buildings you need to build.

Analyse carefully what raw materials are expensive in your country. Just open the market tab and then sort the raw materials by “market price”. Then you can see where you have shortages and you should satisfy your people more, but again be careful, it makes no sense to build factories if you don’t have enough sales for their output.

So currently in this direction I will put up producing buildings:

  • Hardwood
  • Furniture
  • Iron
  • Paper
  • Clothes
  • Steel

And everything should contribute to my GDP growing in the long run.

If I want to build a luxury clothing factory now, I will build a new factory in the other state and I will not interfere with the existing industry because there are big gaps that I have to make up. A happier population that spends more will also make you money so you need to be tactical about how you meet their needs even for these very luxury goods.

The shady way of investing

Beware, if you decide to invest you must have enough labour, as I wrote above. Otherwise your factories will be inefficient and you won’t make much real money. So keep a close eye on this. Alternatively, try to encourage positive migration to you from the start.

Take advantage of bonuses

Another effective way to boost your GDP is to support the industry where you have some buff. Below you can see that Wallonia has a +10% coal mines buff and it makes sense to build coal mines here as their efficiency and output will be a bit higher for you.

So at the start of the game, check and plan where it makes sense for you to build more minerals – because you can mine significantly more. And it makes a difference if you mine +60 coal or +66 at least on your market it will be noticeable.

Keep an eye on your infrastructure

Another part that affects GDP will be infrastructure. It doesn’t affect GDP directly, but it does affect whether the goods you produce in factories get to people. When you see an exclamation point and percentages above a country, you know you need to start building either a railroad or a port immediately to increase connectivity to your surrounding provinces…

… otherwise the goods produced in this country will be harder to get to market, the factory will be less efficient and GDP will not grow as fast as it could.

Increase the wealth of your people

In addition to investing in factories, you have another way to increase your GDP by investing in your people. If they are richer and happier, you can expect them to spend more money in the economy. Therefore, as I wrote above, after the basic raw materials you need to put together a way to get the luxury raw materials as well – because these increase their satisfaction.

Once you have solved the basic deficiencies, start building new factories where you will produce the luxury goods to meet the demand and you can always sell the surplus. The question is whether luxury goods or goods in general are worth buying from neighbouring countries – there I just have to say to be careful that you don’t finance your opponent – it could backfire on you.

I'm Martin, the main creator of this site. I love city builders, transport, and war strategy games. So I create this site to share my love with others! Let's make Tycoon games great again!