By Chris King • 21 March 2023 • 2:52
Image of Helsinki.
Credit: Google maps - reza karami
According to the UN World Happiness Report 2023, published on Monday, March 20, Finland is once again the happiest country in the world. It maintains the top position for the sixth consecutive year.
The experts who prepare this annual report carried out surveys among the citizens of 137 countries and evaluated different factors. These included income, health, social connections, the feeling of freedom to make road decisions, generosity, and the absence of corruption.
As highlighted by the report, the perception of the planet’s inhabitants about their lives continues to be ‘remarkably resilient’ despite having gone through a pandemic for three long years.
During this time, the report found that what had been most influential in keeping people’s spirits high has been the ‘pro-social’ acts and support that people had given each other, which was much higher than in previous reports
Finland is the least densely populated country in the European Union, one which usually stands out for its powerful public welfare system and its low corruption rates. It continues to lead the happiest countries in the world, followed by Denmark, and Iceland, both also with high rates of equality and vital evaluation of the respondents.
The Nordic countries – with the exception of Sweden – managed to maintain lower death rates from Covid-19 thanks to the rapid and effective measures adopted, which the report considered highly relevant.
Lithuania was the country that experienced the biggest rise in the rankings in recent years, moving from 52nd in 2017 to 20th in this year’s ranking. At the bottom of the list are war-torn Afghanistan, which fell to the Taliban in 2021, and Lebanon, which has been mired in a severe economic crisis since the explosion that devastated its capital, Beirut, in 2020.
Surprisingly, despite the ongoing conflict with Russia, Ukraine finished in 92nd position. Russia meanwhile was placed at No70.
The World Happiness Report has been published every March 20 for the last 10 years, when the UN General Assembly adopted resolution 66/281, proclaiming that day as World Happiness Day.
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Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
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