The following report was released earlier this week.
This is the tenth edition of the GPI: the world’s leading measure of global peacefulness produced by the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP). It gauges on-going domestic and international conflict, safety and security in society, and the degree of militarisation in 163 countries and territories by taking into account 23 indicators. The tenth anniversary report presents the most comprehensive analysis to date on the trends in peace and violence over the past decade. The 2016 edition expands its coverage by including Palestine for the first time.
From the Report Launch News Release
The tenth edition of the Global Peace Index highlights a stark and growing inequality in global levels of peacefulness as the gap between the most and least peaceful countries continues to widen. The study, by international think- tank the Institute for Economics and Peace, finds that, while 81 countries improved, the deterioration in another 79 outweighed these gains, meaning that peace declined at a faster rate than in the previous year. Despite this some of the most peaceful countries are now recording historically high levels of peace.
The score for the Middle East and Africa (MENA), the least peaceful region in the world in last year’s report, dropped further as regional conflicts intensified, dragging down global peacefulness. So intense is the current concentration of violence and conflict in MENA that, when considered separately, the rest of the world’s average peace levels improved. Three of the five biggest declines in peace occurred in the region including Yemen, Libya and Bahrain.
The world became less peaceful in 2016, reinforcing an underlying decade-long deterioration in world peacefulness driven primarily by increased terrorism and higher levels of political instability.
The economic impact of violence on the global economy totalled $13.6 trillion or 13.3% of gross world product, equivalent to 11 times the size of global foreign direct investment.
The economic impact of violence was $137 trillion over the last decade – greater than global GDP in 2015.
Refugees and displaced persons have risen dramatically over the last decade, doubling to approximately 60 million people between 2007 and 2016, nearly 1% of the world’s population.
Iceland is the world’s most peaceful country, followed by Denmark and Austria.
Syria is least peaceful, followed by South Sudan, Iraq, Afghanistan and Somalia.
Panama, Thailand and Sri Lanka showed greatest improvements in peace; Yemen, Ukraine and Turkey suffered the greatest deteriorations.
In Brazil, a 15% increase in political instability coupled with deteriorations in both the incarceration and police rates, presents a worrying trend just months before the start of the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.