Safest Countries Around The World

The Institute for Economics and Peace conducts an annual ranking of which countries in the world are the safest, called the Global Peace Index. The 2020 report shows that the world is less peaceful today than it was a year ago.

The report concludes that “the conflicts and crises that emerged in the past decade have begun to abate, only to be replaced with a new wave of tension and uncertainty as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic”.

But while the factors that affect world peace clearly change over time, one fact has stayed constant; the same country has taken the top spot for the past 12 years–Iceland. The U.S. came 121 on the list, the same as last year.

163 countries were ranked with a score (1=most peaceful, 5=least peaceful) with the top ten remaining largely unchanged from 2019:

10. Switzerland

It scored 1.366 points because it has a low crime rate.

9. Japan

Japan has a score of 1.36 on the peace index because it has a low homicide rate and its citizens can’t get their hands on weapons, plus transport is good, particularly its high speed trains. It has moved up two places from 2019.

8. Czech Republic

It scored 1.337 points because it doesn’t spend much on its military and has a low crime rate. It moved down one spot from the year before.

7. Singapore

Singapore received a score of 1.321 due to low scores in domestic and international conflict, plus high levels of societal safety.

6. Canada

Canada scored 1.298 with friendly cities such as Montreal, ranking highly.

5. Denmark

Denmark’s residents consider themselves happy and safe–it has a score of 1.283.

4. Austria

Austria earned a score of 1.275, with peaceful elections and low weapon imports.

3. Portugal

The Global Peace Index gave Lisbon a score of 1.247 owing to its safety.

2. New Zealand

With very little internal conflict or violence, New Zealand scored 1.198 and ranked second.

1. Iceland

With very low homicide rates, few people in jail (per capita) and few terrorist events, Iceland scored 1.078.

The study made several topline conclusions:

The report covers 99.7% of the world’s population and uses 23 qualitative and quantitative indicators from highly respected sources to compile the index. The indicators cover three main areas: ‘ongoing conflict’, ‘safety and security’, and ‘militarisation’–all three of which got worse during the course of the last research period.

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