Singapore more liveable than Hong Kong for the first time: The Economist

A view of Singapore’s skyline. Photo: Reuters

Singapore is more liveable than Hong Kong, according to The Economist Intelligence Unit’s latest Global Liveability Ranking, marking the first time in the ranking’s history that the Republic outranks the Special Administrative Region. Singapore rose 11 places to 35th, while Hong Kong fell to 45th place.

This is Singapore’s highest-ever position in the Global Liveability Ranking, which rates 140 cities around the world for quality of life. The improved score was due to improving education, which has led to it topping a global educational ranking based on mathematics, reading and science ability among 15-year-olds.

While Hong Kong’s score remained the same as last year, its ranking fell two spots to 45th place, thanks to other cities’ improved scores. Melbourne, Australia took the top spot for the seventh year in a row while war-ravaged Damascus in Syria was last.

“Singapore’s jump up the rankings can be attributed to consistent and impressive improvements in educational attainment, which has delivered a perfect score for education and pushed the overall score for the city-state above 90 per cent for the first time since the survey began,” said Jon Copesake, editor of the survey.

However, Copesake went on to note that although 10 ranking places now separate Hong Kong and Singapore, the difference in their scores is marginal at just 1.6 per cent.

“Both comfortably sit in the top tier of liveability where there are few, if any, challenges to lifestyle,” he said.

Average liveability has improved across the world, for the first time since the survey began, particularly in Asia. Singapore was one of 12 cities that received higher scores this year.

Of the cities with rising liveability, half were in Asia with Singapore joined by Shanghai, Bandar Seri Begawan, Phnom Penh, Colombo and Port Moresby. Though reasons for the uptick varied, they were largely due to higher scores in infrastructure as well as culture and environment.

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