The world’s happiest, richest, healthiest, and most crime-free countries revealed

The Legatum Institute, a think tank based in London, on Mondayreleased its annual global Prosperity Index, a huge survey that ranks what it calls the most prosperous countries in the world.

The amount of money a country has is one factor of prosperity, but the Legatum Institute considered more than that in its ranking.

The organisation compared 89 variables to come up with its list. These variables include traditional indicators like per-capita gross domestic product and the number of people in full-time work, but also more interesting figures such as the number of secure internet servers a country has and how well rested people feel on a day-to-day basis.

The variables are then split into eight subindexes: economy, entrepreneurship and opportunity, governance, education, health, safety and security, personal freedom, and social capital. The index looked at the 142 countries in the world that have the most available data.

3. Denmark — Danes can enjoy great governance, top-level education, and a high social-capital score. If not for its relatively poor health score (16th), the country might top the whole Index. It climbed one place this year.

2. Switzerland — Switzerland has been second in the Prosperity Index for three consecutive years. The Alpine nation ranks top of the governance subindex and has the second-highest-rated economy.

1. Norway — The Scandinavian country tops the Prosperity Index once again in 2015. It has been first in each of the past seven years. Norway is the only country ranked in the top 10 of every subindex.

Lees het hele artikel op The Independent

70% van de Noren wil niet bij de EU

More Norwegians are against seeking European Union (EU) membership today than several decades ago, making the prospect of Norway joining the 28-member bloc look even dimmer.

A new opinion poll, the Norwegian news agency NTB reported Monday, shows that 70 percent of Norwegians opposes joining the EU. Only 20.2 percent of respondents in the poll, which was carried out by the agency Sentio for Norwegian-language newspapers Klassekampen” and “Nationen,” were in favor of Norway joining the EU.

“The Norwegian resistance to (joining) the EU is strong and ongoing,” said Heming Olaussen, leader of “Nei til EU”, a 26,000-strong Norwegian political group spearheading a “Say no to EU” movement. “The idea that we would give up Norway to a United States of Europe? I think that idea is completely inedible to 90 percent of the Norwegian population,” said Olaussen.

Norway has said no to joining the EU in two close-fought referendums, the first in 1972 and the last in 1994. The result in 1994 was close with 52.2 percent of no votes and 47.8 percent of yes votes when the turnout was a massive 89 percent. Since 1994, Norway has steadily aligned itself with the EU in economic and political matters, mainly through its membership in the European Economic Area (EEA). The EEA is an agreement that facilitates trade between EU member countries and the four non-EU countries — namely Norway, Switzerland, Liechtenstein and Iceland.

Lees verder op New Europe Online