Some of the world’s key financial centres in major developed countries are becoming a lot less “liveable” due to the rising threat of terrorism.
According to report from the Economist Intelligence Unit published on Thursday, Western cities that used to rank very high in the EIU’s index, are now beset with growing terrorist threats, civil unrest and increasing geopolitical tensions, which have all made big cities tougher places to live.
Even cities like New York and other places in the US do not rank in the top liveable cities in the world due to social unrest borne out of “the deaths of black people in police custody.”
In its annual rankings of city liveability, which scores cities based on factors such as stability, infrastructure and culture, the EIU said many of the scores had declined.
Here is the EIU (emphasis ours):
“Over the past six months 16 cities of the 140 surveyed have experienced changes in scores. This rises to 35 cities, or 25% of the total number surveyed, when looking at changes over the past year.
“Of these changes, the majority have been negative (29 in the past 12 months), reflecting deteriorating stability as cities around the world face heightened threats of terrorism or unrest.”
The more peaceful countries scored better in the survey. Australia and Canada were seen as having the most top ranked cities, with Melbourne coming first and Vancouver, Toronto and Calgary all making the top 10. Vienna in Austria is the highest placed European city, coming in second.
While there is not much to separate the best performers, many cities in the middle range or towards the bottom have got worse, with more frequent acts of terrorism and war to blame.
Here is the EIU again:
“Violent acts of terrorism have been reported in many countries, including Turkey, Australia, Bangladesh, Pakistan, France, Belgium and the US. This has been a year undoubtedly marked by terrorism.”
“Terrorism has also been compounded by unrest and, in more extreme cases, civil war in some countries. Libya, Syria, Iraq and Ukraine remain the subject of high-profile armed conflicts, while a number of other countries, such as Nigeria, continue to battle insurgent groups.”
“Meanwhile even relatively stable countries such as the US have seen mounting civil unrest linked to the Black Lives Matter movement, which has scrutinised the large number of deaths of black people while in police custody.”