New Zealand Embassy Manila, The Philippines

New Zealand declared the world’s most peaceful nation, again

New Zealand has come out on top of the ‘global peace index’ for the second year running.

The Institute of Economics and Peace (IEP), an independent not-for profit research organisation based in Australia, released its fourth annual global peace index earlier this week.  The index ranks 149 countries according to their degree of peacefulness.

New Zealand topped the ratings again this year, with a slightly lower (improved) score than in 2009 because of increased political stability.  “Most aspects of safety and security in New Zealand’s society receive the lowest possible scores,” the report states.  “The majority of New Zealand’s measures of militarisation continue to receive very low scores, including military expenditure as a percentage of GDP.”

IEP says that the goal of the index is to “provide insight on how countries, businesses and international organisations can help the world move towards peace”.

The research that leads to the index and rankings looks at 23 indicators of peace in three broad categories: ongoing domestic and international conflict; safety and security in society; and militarisation. 

Iceland and Japan followed New Zealand on the list of the world’s most peaceful countries.  IEP suggests that small, stable and democratic countries consistently rank towards the top of the index.

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