Taiwan is happiest place in Southeast Asia

Kaohsiung's 85 Sky Tower next to the port in Taiwan.
Kaohsiung's 85 Sky Tower next to the port in Taiwan.

Taiwan is happiest place in Southeast Asia

by Lamat R Hasan

NEW DELHI (ANN Desk) - The World Happiness report, prepared by the Sustainable Development Solutions Network for the United Nations, ranks countries on income, freedom, trust, healthy life expectancy, social support and generosity.

Finland has emerged as the happiest nation in the world in the sixth World Happiness Report.

Norway, which topped the list last year, finished second in the 2018 report, followed by Denmark, Iceland and Switzerland.

The report, prepared by the Sustainable Development Solutions Network for the United Nations, ranks countries on six key variables - income, freedom, trust, healthy life expectancy, social support and generosity.

The 2018 report focusses on migration within and between countries and was released on March 14, a week ahead of the World Happiness Day. It surveyed 156 countries for their happiness levels, and 117 countries to determine the happiness of immigrants.

In Asia, Israel finished first occupying the 11th spot, while United Arab Emirates came second at rank 20, followed by Qatar (32) and Saudi Arabia (33).

In Southeast Asia, Taiwan was found to be the happiest nation at rank 26, followed by Singapore (34). Malaysia (35), Thailand (46), Japan (54) and South Korea (57).

Philippines finished at 71, and Singapore a rank below Pakistan at 76.

China is lagging behind its Asian neighbours at 86 in the happiness quotient, while its economic competitor, India is seemingly even more unhappy at rank 133.

Among other Asian nations, Mongolia was ranked at 94, Vietnam at 95, Indonesia, 96, Bhutan – which was once the happiest - at 97, Nepal at 101, Laos, 110, Bangladesh, 115, Sri Lanka, 116, Cambodia, 120 and Myanmar, 130.

The 10 happiest countries also occupied similar spots on being ranked on immigrant happiness. The survey found that those who move to happier countries gained, while those who moved to less happy countries lose.

The United States' ranking dropped four spots this year. It finished at the 18th slot. “US policymakers should take note. The US happiness ranking is falling, in part because of the ongoing epidemics of obesity, substance abuse and untreated depression," the report stated.

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