Norway has been named the most prosperous nation to live in by the Legatum Prosperity Index for the fifth year running.
The Index, which ranks 142 nations according to extensive wealth and wellbeing factors – including Economy, Education and Personal Freedom – reveals that global prosperity has risen over the past five years, largely due to improvements in entrepreneurship, health and education.
The Scandinavian country has now been ranked first in the Index in five of the seven years it has been operating, largely due to its booming resource-rich economy. The country also ranked first in the Social Capital category, and scored in the top ten in all other categories aside from Governance, for which it placed 12th.
Switzerland, Canada, Sweden and New Zealand rounded out the top five nations, while Australia was just outside the top five, in seventh position.
“Since the inaugural Legatum Prosperity Index, the world has seen a continuous increase in prosperity with citizens in many countries experiencing improving wealth and wellbeing,” said Jeffrey Gedmin, President and CEO of the Legatum Institute.
“But we cannot afford to be complacent. Issues of war, governance and personal freedom continue to dog the Middle East and parts of Africa. Leading nations are not exempt, with the US and UK experiencing poor performance in the rankings in recent years,” he added.
Indeed, both the US and UK remain outside the top ten, with US ranked in 11th place and the UK in 16th. However, the US was found to have the world’s second best Health facilities, after Luxembourg.
EU countries, on the whole did improve, in this year’s Index compared to 2012’s, with Germany (ranked 14th) recording the highest increase in overall prosperity in Europe since 2009.
The three least prosperous nations were all located in Africa, with Chad, the Central African Republic and Democratic Republic of Congo occupying the Index’s bottom three positions.
Article published 31st October 2013