The index also revealed that Iceland remains the most peaceful, a position it has held since 2008. Portugal has once again been placed among the top nations.
Behind Iceland, come New Zealand, Austria, Portugal and Denmark as the top five most peaceful countries in the world.
The twelfth edition of the Global Peace Index has this year ranked 163 independent states and territories according to their level of peacefulness.
Produced by the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP), the GPI is the world’s leading measure of global peacefulness.
The GPI covers 99.7 percent of the world’s population, using 23 qualitative and quantitative indicators from highly respected sources, and measures the state of peace using three thematic domains: the level of Societal Safety and Security; the extent of Ongoing Domestic and International Conflict; and the degree of Militarisation.
The results of the 2018 GPI find that the global level of peace has deteriorated by 0.27 percent in the last year, marking the fourth successive year of deterioration.
Ninety-two countries deteriorated, while 71 countries improved. The 2018 GPI reveals a world in which the tensions, conflicts, and crises that emerged in the past decade remain unresolved, especially in the Middle East, resulting in a gradual, sustained fall in peacefulness.
Underlying the fall in peacefulness, six of the nine regions in the world deteriorated in the last year.
The four most peaceful regions – Europe, North America, Asia-Pacific, and South America – all recorded deteriorations, with the largest overall deterior-ation occurring in South America, owing to falls in the Safety and Security domain, mainly due to increases in the incarceration rate and impact of terrorism.
Syria remains the least peaceful country in the world, a position it has held for the past five years. Afghanistan, South Sudan, Iraq and Somalia comprise the remaining least peaceful countries. Europe, the world’s most peaceful region, recorded a deterioration for the third straight year. It deteriorated across all three GPI domains and eleven indicators, most notably in the intensity of internal conflict and relations with neighbouring countries. For the first time in the history of the index, a Western European country experienced one of the five largest deteriorations, with Spain falling 10 places in the rankings to 30th, owing to internal political tensions and an increase in the impact of terrorism. The ten-year trend in peacefulness finds that global peacefulness has deteriorated by 2.38 percent since 2008, with 85 GPI countries recording a deterioration, while 75 improved. The index has deteriorated for eight of the last eleven years, with the last improvement in peacefulness occurring in 2014. In Europe, the world’s most peaceful region, 61 percent of countries have deteriorated since 2008, while Portugal was one of the biggest climbers over this period.
Meanwhile, Portugal was late last year rated as one of the top three expat destinations in the world when it comes to the general living experience in the country.
According to the latest HSBC Expat Explorer survey, Portugal was placed third in the Experience league table, just behind New Zealand and Spain.
Portugal was particularly lauded by expats for the healthy lifestyle they enjoyed here.
Almost three-fifths of expats in Portugal (57 percent) say their physical health is better as a result of the move, compared to a global average of 36 percent.
Overall, Singapore was once again rated by expats as the best country in the world to live and work, followed by Norway, which rose four places to come second.
The survey was completed by 27,587 expats from 159 countries and territories through an online questionnaire in March and April 2017, conducted by YouGov and commissioned by HSBC Expat.