Australia world’s second best for human development: UNDP report

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March 18, 2013

Australia has been ranked the second best country in the world when it comes to human development.

The United Nations, ranking 187 countries, put Australia behind only Norway across a range of measures from life expectancy to economic development to safety on the streets.

Australia sits ahead of the United States (third), the Netherlands, Germany, New Zealand and Ireland.

The United Kingdom sits 26th on the index while South Africa ranked 121st.

The UN's annual human development index shows that Australia retained its number two position even though across most indicators there was an improvement in life for most Australians.

Australia has one of the highest life expectancies in the world at 82 years, the second highest measure of education, high levels of immunisation coverage and a relatively low rate of suicide.

Australia had kept spending on health under control compared to other nations

The country is let down in areas such as fossil fuel dependence and deforestation. Australia was the only country in the top 10 to have lost forest area between 1990 and 2010.

It was also marked down on gender inequality, ranking 17th in the world behind nations such as the Netherlands, Denmark and France. Australia's teenage pregnancy rate, while low at a global level, was the third highest among the top 10 nations.

The report said there had been a global improvement in human development led by nations such as Afghanistan, Sierra Leone and East Timor.

"Over the past decades, countries across the world have been converging towards higher levels of human development, as shown by the Human Development Index," it found.

"All groups and regions have seen notable improvement in all HDI components, with faster progress in low and medium HDI countries. On this basis, the world is becoming less unequal."

 

Human Development Index (HDI) - 2012 Rankings

Very High
Human Development

High
Human Development

Medium
Human Development

Low
Human Development

1.   Norway
2.   Australia
3.   United States
4.   Netherlands
5.   Germany
6.   New Zealand
7.   Ireland
8.   Sweden
9.   Switzerland
10. Japan
11. Canada
12. Korea (Republic of)
13. Hong Kong, China   
     (SAR)
13. Iceland
15. Denmark
16. Israel
17. Belgium
18. Austria
18. Singapore
20. France
21. Finland
21. Slovenia
23. Spain
24. Liechtenstein
25. Italy
26. Luxembourg
26. United Kingdom
28. Czech Republic
29. Greece
30. Brunei Darussalam
31. Cyprus
32. Malta
33. Andorra
33. Estonia
35. Slovakia
36. Qatar
37. Hungary
38. Barbados
39. Poland
40. Chile
41. Lithuania
41. United Arab Emirates
43. Portugal
44. Latvia
45. Argentina
46. Seychelles
47. Croatia
48. Bahrain
49. Bahamas
50. Belarus
51. Uruguay
52. Montenegro
52. Palau
54. Kuwait
55. Russian Federation
56. Romania
57. Bulgaria
57. Saudi Arabia
59. Cuba
59. Panama
61. Mexico
62. Costa Rica
63. Grenada
64. Libya
64. Malaysia
64. Serbia
67. Antigua and Barbuda
67. Trinidad and Tobago
69. Kazakhstan
70. Albania
71. Venezuela
72. Dominica
72. Georgia
72. Lebanon
72. Saint Kitts and Nevis
76. Iran
77. Peru
78. The former Yugoslav
      Republic of Macedonia
78. Ukraine
80. Mauritius
81. Bosnia & Herzegovina
82. Azerbaijan
83. Saint Vincent and the
     Grenadines
84. Oman
85. Brazil
85. Jamaica
87. Armenia
88. Saint Lucia
89. Ecuador
90. Turkey
91. Colombia
92. Sri Lanka
93. Algeria
94. Tunisia
95. Tonga
96. Belize
96. Dominican Republic
96. Fiji
96. Samoa
100. Jordan
101. China
102. Turkmenistan
103. Thailand
104. Maldives
105. Suriname
106. Gabon
107. El Salvador
108. Bolivia
108. Mongolia
110. Palestine
111. Paraguay
112. Egypt
113. Moldova
114. Philippines
114. Uzbekistan
116. Syrian Arab Republic
117. Micronesia
       (Federated States of)
118. Guyana
119. Botswana
120. Honduras
121. Indonesia
121. Kiribati
121. South Africa
124. Vanuatu
125. Kyrgyzstan
125. Tajikistan
127. Viet Nam
128. Namibia
129. Nicaragua
130. Morocco
131. Iraq
132. Cape Verde
133. Guatemala
134. Timor-Leste
135. Ghana
136. Equatorial Guinea
136. India
138. Cambodia
138. Lao People's
       Democratic Republic
140. Bhutan
141. Swaziland
142. Congo
143. Solomon Islands
144. São Tomé & Príncipe
145. Kenya
146. Bangladesh
146. Pakistan
148. Angola
149. Myanmar
150. Cameroon
151. Madagascar
152. Tanzania
153. Nigeria
154. Senegal
155. Mauritania
156. Papua New Guinea
157. Nepal
158. Lesotho
159. Togo
160. Yemen
161. Haiti
161. Uganda
163. Zambia
164. Djibouti
165. Gambia
166. Benin
167. Rwanda
168. Côte d'Ivoire
169. Comoros
170. Malawi
171. Sudan
172. Zimbabwe
173. Ethiopia
174. Liberia
175. Afghanistan
176. Guinea-Bissau
177. Sierra Leone
178. Burundi
178. Guinea
180. Central African
       Republic
181. Eritrea
182. Mali
183. Burkina Faso
184. Chad
185. Mozambique
186. Congo (Democratic
       Republic of the)
186. Niger


The HDI rankings featured above were published in the 2013 Human Development Report



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