Published 22 February 2011
The Business Times
SINGAPORE is the fourth most liveable city in Asia, after Osaka, Tokyo and Hong Kong, according to a survey by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).
A rating of 80-100 points means that ‘there are few, if any, challenges to living standards’, while a rating of 50 points or less is a reflection that ‘most aspects of living are severely restricted’.
Besides the four Asian countries mentioned above, only two others – Seoul and Taipei – received ratings of 80 points and above. The world average is 76 points.
The inaugural survey places North American, European and Australian cities as the biggest winners in the liveability stakes.
Vancouver, Melbourne and Vienna were the top three cities, with ratings of above 97 points.
Cities in South Asia and Africa – such as Dhaka, Lagos and Harare – scored below 40 points and make up the bottom of the table.
Violence – whether through crime, civil insurgency, terrorism or war – is responsible for many of the poorest performing scores, said the EIU.
The survey of 140 cities defined liveability across five broad categories of stability, health care, culture and environment, education, and infrastructure.
Liveability was rated using quantitative indicators from external data sources such as the World Bank and qualitative indicators based on the judgement of in-house country analysts and field correspondents.
‘Hubs such as Hong Kong and Singapore perform well, reflecting locations where economic strength and political stability feed into strong infrastructure and broad cultural availability,’ said the EIU.