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They’ve Named The Best Country In The World

Australia came second, but which country came first?

Well, they’ve done it. The United Nations have officially crowned the best country in the world, so it’s time to pack up your bags and move to… Norway?

That’s right, the land of vikings, farming and fjords has topped the UN’s Human Development Report of 2015. It’s actually the 12th year in a row this Scandinavian beauty has taken out the top spot – this annual report evaluates countries in the areas of life expectancy, education and standard of living/income.

With a composite score of 0.944, Norway topped the list of 188 countries and territories thanks to it’s high life expectancy (81.6) and it’s gross national income per capita ($64,992). They also have really cool bank notes and passports, but that’s neither here nor there.

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But don’t quit your job and move to Norway just yet – though it is tempting (have you seen this place!?) – guess who came in at number two? Yep, that’s right – you’re about to feel a whole lot of hometown pride because Australia just beat out the US, UK and a bunch of others to nab second place.

Coming in with an aggregate score of 0.935 (just 0.009 points behind Norway), Australia is praised for its life expectancy of 82.4 and did exceptionally well when it comes to schooling. We have the world’s highest expected years of schooling at 20.2, with the average Aussie completing 13 years of schooling (which is pretty high!) So the next time your parents wonder why you’re going back to complete your masters or PhD, you can tell them that it’s kind of expected for us Aussies to be highly educated (and not at all reflected on the job market).

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Hong Kong is the country with the highest life expectancy at birth with an average citizen reaching 84 years old – other countries with high life expectancies are Switzerland (83), Japan (83.4) and Italy (83.1). Qatar has the highest gross national income per capita with a whopping $123,124, with a surprising effort from Liechtenstein who have a GNI of $79,851, a huge 37k higher than Australia – who knew?

Check out the top 20 countries with their aggregate scores below, and click here for the full list of scores.

#1 Norway (0.944)
#2 Australia (0.935)
#3 Switzerland (0.930)
#4 Denmark (0.923)
#5 Netherlands (0.922)
#6 Germany (0.916)
#6 Ireland (0.916)
#8 United States (0.915)
#9 Canada (0.913)
#9 New Zealand (0.913)
#11 Singapore (0.912)
#12 Hong Kong (0.910)
#13 Liechtenstein (0.908)
#14 Sweden (0.907)
#14 United Kingdom (0.907)
#16 Iceland (0.899)
#17 Republic Of Korea (0.898)
#18 Israel (0.894)
#19 Luxembourg (0.892)
#20 Japan (0.891)

Curious to see whether Norway is all it’s cracked up to be? Fly to Europe with Qantas today.