Singaporeans among world’s top 10 pessimists: survey

SINGAPORE - FEBRUARY 13: People throng the Vivocity shopping mall on February 13, 2013 in Singapore. The government white paper revealed Singapore's population may increase 30% to over 6.9 million by 2030, with nearly half the population expected to be foreign-born. Many local residents are critising the plan concerned about the added strain on housing, transportation and healthcare and the diminishing identity of the Singaporean community. (Photo by Suhaimi Abdullah/Getty Images) (Getty Images)

Singapore ranks among the 10 countries with the most pessimistic people in the world, according to a survey done by Gallup.

In a report released last week, the international pollster said 24 per cent of the respondents in Singapore rated their future lives lower than their current lives.

The survey was based on telephone and face-to-face-interviews with about 1,000 adults in each of 141 countries and areas last year. It asked respondents to indicate which level they feel best represents the life they have currently and about five years from now.

Greece topped the list of pessimistic countries with 38 per cent of respondents pessimistic about the direction of their lives. The European nation has been hit hard by recession, and official data shows that it’s jobless rate hit 27.4 per cent in the first quarter of this year.

Three other European countries followed Greece: Czech Republic (33 per cent), Slovenia (32 per cent) and Hungary (29 per cent).

Rounding out the list of countries with the most pessimists were Haiti and Taiwan with 26 per cent each, and Spain, Cyprus and Poland with 25 per cent.

Tan Ern Ser, an associate professor at the National University of Singapore’s Department of Sociology, said that although Singapore’s problems are smaller than those in the Europe, it is hard to compare between the two.

“I believe they (Singaporeans) compare themselves against the First World standards we know of in the 70’s and 80’s (Swiss standards) and that of North Europe, like Norway and Finland at present,” he said.

Gallup’s latest poll follows a similar poll it conducted in 2011, which identified Singapore as the country with the least emotional people in the world.

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