PH EVEN RANKS LOWER THAN WAR-TORN YEMEN
Global Finance magazine ranked the Philippines the lowest in its “World’s Safest Countries 2021” rankings. The magazine said it mainly took into consideration the risks from the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Philippines is the Least Safe Country in the World…Again
The Philippines fell to the bottom of the list at 134th place—below Colombia (#133.) The PH was even lower than war-torn Yemen (#124.) Consequently, the Philippines was the least safe of the 134 countries in the Global Finance evaluation. Global Finance also listed the Philippines as the most unsafe country in 2019 where it was at 128th place below Yemen.
Alongside the Philippines, North Macedonia, Yemen, Peru, Mexico, Brazil, Bosnia and Herzegovina*, Nigeria, Guatemala, and Colombia are among the ten most unsafe countries.
Other Southeast Asian countries fared much better than the Philippines. Singapore was in the Top 10 at #4. Malaysia came in at 27th, Vietnam, 49th, Indonesia, 60th and Thailand, 70th.
Meanwhile, Iceland ranked the highest in the Global Finance Safety Index. Following Iceland was the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Singapore, Finland, Mongolia, Norway, Denmark, Canada, and New Zealand.
The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly
Of course, such articles as this one do not help promote sales of my best seller, “The Philippines Expat Advisor.”
However, it’s not my job to promote the Philippines. Since August 2009, I’ve been writing about life in the Philippines. I always try to give you the good, the bad, and the ugly side of life in “paradise.”
However, since the Philippines began the longest and strictest lockdowns in the world in March 2020, I haven’t had a lot of positive posts to present.
Philippines and the Mishandling of the COVID-19 Pandemic
Global Finance magazine said it mainly took into consideration the risks from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Global Finance said the safety score for countries took into account “three fundamental factors.”
- War and peace.
- Personal security and natural disaster risk.
- The unique risk factors stemming from COVID-19.
Based mainly on 2020 data were the 2021 scores. However, those directly related to COVID-19, used data as late as May 30 this year.
It said deaths due to COVID-19 were a “direct measure of how well or poorly” a country responded to the spread of disease. This, in turn, is based on the following:
- The country’s “health-care infrastructure.
- Government capabilities.
- Political leadership and culture in face of a major, unexpected crisis.”
Vaccinations per capita reflect a country’s “financial power and future performance via preventative measures stemming further outbreaks,” it added.
Other Poor Rankings for the Philippines
- The Philippines dropped two ranks from 2020 to 138th place in the 2021 World Press Freedom Index report in April. A “Reporters without Borders” report cited “persecution” of the media and online “harassment campaigns led by pro-Duterte troll armies.”
- In June, a Bloomberg’s global study that measured resilience to the pandemic ranked the Philippines 52nd of 53 economies just ahead of Argentina.
- Think-tank Lowy Institute released a study in March 2021. It ranked the Philippines 81st out of 102 countries rated for their performance in relation to the fight against COVID-19.
- In 2019, the Philippines recorded the highest number of land rights and environmental defenders killed among Asian countries with 43. This was also the second highest in the world behind Colombia, out of 212 killed that year. That was according to environment and human rights watchdog Global Witness.
- The World Bank recently released a study stating that many Filipino students “do not know what they should know.” In the World Bank report, poor learning results were observed among students in the country as 80 percent of students fell below minimum levels of proficiency expected.
(*The Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina is one of the two entities that compose the State of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the other being Republika Srpska.)