Fri11242017

LAST_UPDATEFri, 24 Nov 2017 10pm

Did You Know We Moved Up 5 Spots In World Happiest Country Index? Find Out Our New Ranking That Will Make You Smile

Filepic: NSTFilepic: NST

Yes, Malaysians are happier today than they were a year ago!

In fact we jumped five spots and landed as the fourth happiest country in Asia.

Our worldwide ranking is at 42nd place among 155 nations, which means we are among the 50% of world's happiest nations.

This was according to the 2017 World Happiness Report, which gave a mixed report for our Asian neighbours.

Other neigbouring countries that managed to climb up the rank were Thailand (32 from 33), Taiwan (33 from 42), Vietnam (94 from 96) and the Philippines (72 from 82), Bernama reports.

Which is the happiest country in Asia? Its our neighbour down south which came in top of the table again in Asia.

Singapore might still be the happiest country in Asia, however their rank dropped from 22nd place to 26th worldwide.

Who are the happiest people in the world? Its the Norwegians followed closely by Denmark, Iceland and Switzerland.

The top ten on the list includes Finland at 5th place, the Netherlands (6), Canada (7), New Zealand (8), and Australia and Sweden tied for 9th place.

Surprisingly, Nicaragua charted the biggest gains in the ranking, and is included in the list of 20 countries reporting the highest gains in happiness. Filepic: Getty ImagesSurprisingly, Nicaragua charted the biggest gains in the ranking, and is included in the list of 20 countries reporting the highest gains in happiness. Filepic: Getty Images

According to the World Happiness Report, well-being is shaped by a range of factors.

"All of the top countries rank highly on all the main factors found to support happiness: caring, freedom, generosity, honesty, health, income and good governance," the report noted.

Other questions in the survey measure people's perceived levels of freedom, generosity and trust — both in each other and in their governments and businesses.

The report draws on survey data from 155 countries. "We ask people to think of their lives as a whole," report co-editor John Helliwell, an economist at the University of British Columbia explains.

Each year, researchers survey 1,000 people in each country, the report states.

Jon-Åge Øyslebø, minister of communications, cultural affairs and education at the Norwegian Embassy shares the reason his country came out on top.

"Access to higher education, access to high-quality health services are part of it," Øyslebø added that social support programmes and the economy is pretty important.

So what does that say about Malaysia? Well, we might not aspire to the top of the table yet the benchmarks show that our economy as well as the key measures of individual happiness are healthy and thriving.

Im comparison, the unhappiest countries in the world are Central African Republic, Burundi and Tanzania respectively.

- mD