Thursday, April 5, 2012

Singapore - Happiest country in South-east Asia

SINGAPORE - The happiest country in South-east Asia, according to a United Nations (UN) report, is Singapore.

The Republic was ranked 33rd out of 156 countries in the United Nations World Happiness Report, with wealthy Scandinavian nations - Denmark, Finland and Norway - taking the top three positions.

Among other South-east Asian countries, Malaysia came in 51st place, Thailand was ranked 52nd, Myanmar 74th and Indonesia 83rd.

The report, commissioned for the UN Conference on Happiness held in New York on Monday, compiled worldwide survey responses from 2005 until mid-last year to determine the happiness level of 156 countries.

Richer countries tended to be happier, the report found, although wealth was not the defining factor for happiness.

"Political freedom, strong social networks and an absence of corruption are together more important than income in explaining well-being differences," the report said. 

"At the individual level, good mental and physical health, someone to count on, job security and stable families are crucial."

The report reflects a new worldwide demand for more attention to be paid to happiness as criteria for government policy.

The United States took the 11th position and Japan 44th. China, at 111th place, was ranked below Iran (No 84) and Syria (No 106). The least happy country was Togo in west Africa. Agencies

Top 10 happiest countries ...
1. Denmark

2. Finland

3. Norway

4. The Netherlands

5. Canada

6. Switzerland

7. Sweden

8. New Zealand

9. Australia

10. Ireland


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