UN Index Rates Life Best in Norway, Worst in Niger

Comcast.net News, October 5, 2009

Norway enjoys the world’s highest quality of life, while Niger suffers the lowest, a U.N. agency said Monday, as it released a ranking that highlights the wide disparities in well-being between rich and poor countries.

The annual Human Development Index, unveiled in Bangkok by the United Nations Development Program, takes into account life expectancy, literacy, school enrollment and per capita gross domestic product in 182 countries.

“A child born in Niger can expect to live to just over 50 years, which is 30 years less than a child born in Norway. Furthermore, the differences in per capita income are huge for every dollar earned per person in Niger, US$85 are earned in Norway,” UNDP said.

Norway was followed by Australia and Iceland on the list, which drew on statistics dating from 2007, before Iceland was hit hard in global economic crisis. Afghanistan and Sierra Leone rounded out the bottom of the ranking.

The United States was listed 13th.

{snip}

“Most migrants, internal and international, reap gains in the form of higher incomes, better access to education and health and improved prospects for their children,” said the report. “These gains often directly benefit family members who stay behind as well as countries of origin indirectly.”

It also suggested that as the populations age in developed countries, they could benefit from increased migration to boost their work forces.

But it cautioned that encouraging migration should not substitute for “efforts by developing countries to achieve growth and improve human well-being.”

[Editor’s Note: the UN’s “Human Development Report” for 2009 can be read here, where there are links to the individual countries and to the data underlying the list.]


Very high Human Development

1. Norway

2. Australia

3. Iceland

4. Canada

5. Ireland

6. Netherlands

7. Sweden

8. France

9. Switzerland

10. Japan

11. Luxembourg

12. Finland

13. United States

14. Austria

15. Spain

16. Denmark

17. Belgium

18. Italy

19. Liechtenstein

20. New Zealand

21. United Kingdom

22. Germany

23. Singapore

24. Hong Kong, China (SAR)

25. Greece

26. Korea (Republic of)

27. Israel

28. Andorra

29. Slovenia

30. Brunei Darussalam

31. Kuwait

32. Cyprus

33. Qatar

34. Portugal

35. United Arab Emirates

36. Czech Republic

37. Barbados

38. Malta

High Human Development

39. Bahrain

40. Estonia

41. Poland

42. Slovakia

43. Hungary

44. Chile

45. Croatia

46. Lithuania

47. Antigua and Barbuda

48. Latvia

49. Argentina

50. Uruguay

51. Cuba

52. Bahamas

53. Mexico

54. Costa Rica

55. Libyan Arab Jamahiriya

56. Oman

57. Seychelles

58. Venezuela (Bolivarian Rupublic of)

59. Saudi Arabia

60. Panama

61. Bulgaria

62. Saint Kitts and Nevis

63. Romania

64. Trinidad and Tobago

65. Montenegro

66. Malaysia

67. Serbia

68. Belarus

69. Saint Lucia

70. Albania

71. Russian Federation

72. Macedonia (the former Yugoslav Republic of)

73. Dominica

74. Grenada

75. Brazil

76. Bosnia and Herzegovina

77. Colombia

78. Peru

79. Turkey

80. Ecuador

81. Mauritius

82. Kazakhstan

83. Lebanon

Medium Human Development

84. Armenia

85. Ukraine

86. Azerbaijan

87. Thailand

88. Iran (Islamic Republic of)

89. Georgia

90. Dominican Republic

91. Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

92. China

93. Belize

94. Samoa

95. Maldives

96. Jordan

97. Suriname

98. Tunisia

99. Tonga

100. Jamaica

101. Paraguay

102. Sri Lanka

103. Gabon

104. Algeria

105. Philippines

106. El Salvador

107. Syrian Arab Republic

108. Fiji

109. Turkmenistan

110. Occupied Palestinian Territories

111. Indonesia

112. Honduras

113. Bolivia

114. Guyana

115. Mongolia

116. Viet Nam

117. Moldova

118. Equatorial Guinea

119. Uzbekistan

120. Kyrgyzstan

121. Cape Verde

122. Guatemala

123. Egypt

124. Nicaragua

125. Botswana

126. Vanuatu

127. Tajikistan

128. Namibia

129. South Africa

130. Morocco

131. São Tomé and Principe

132. Bhutan

133. Lao, People’s Dem. Rep.

134. India

135. Solomon Islands

136. Congo

137. Cambodia

138. Myanmar

139. Comoros

140. Yemen

141. Pakistan

142. Swaziland

143. Angola

144. Nepal

145. Madagascar

146. Bangladesh

147. Kenya

148. Papua New Guinea

149. Haiti

150. Sudan

151. Tanzania, U. Rep. of

152. Ghana

153. Cameroon

154. Mauritania

155. Djibouti

156. Lesotho

157. Uganda

158. Nigeria

Low Human Development

159. Togo

160. Malawi

161. Benin

162. Timor-Leste

163. Côte d’Ivoire

164. Zambia

165. Eritrea

166. Senegal

167. Rwanda

168. Gambia

169. Liberia

170. Guinea

171. Ethiopia

172. Mozambique

173. Guinea-Bissau

174. Burundi

175. Chad

176. Congo (Democratic Republic of the)

177. Burkina Faso

178. Mali

179. Central African Republic

180. Sierra Leone

181. Afghanistan

182. Niger

Note: This 2009 HDI represents statistical values for the year 2007. The data is available here.

HDR 2009: Rationalizing ‘paper walls’ in countries of origin is an important part of reducing the barriers to legal migration.

Topics:

Share This

We welcome comments that add information or perspective, and we encourage polite debate. If you log in with a social media account, your comment should appear immediately. If you prefer to remain anonymous, you may comment as a guest, using a name and an e-mail address of convenience. Your comment will be moderated.

Comments are closed.