MANILA, Philippines - Here's one reason to justify leaving the country and starting a family in Europe, Australia or Canada.
Out of 80 countries, the Philippines ranks only 63rd best country for a baby to born in 2013, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit’s (EIU) Where-to-be-born index 2013.
The best country for a baby to be born in 2013 is Switzerland -- the land of chocolates and high literacy rates -- with a score of 8.22.
The other countries on top of the list are:
2nd - Australia (8.12)
3rd - Norway (8.09)
4th - Sweden (8.02)
5th - Denmark (8.01)
6th - Singapore (8.00)
7th - New Zealand (7.95)
8th - Netherlands (7.94)
9th - Canada (7.81)
10th - Hong Kong (7.80)
The United States, which topped the Where-to-be-born in 1988 index, is no longer the best country for 2013-born babies or those who will reach adulthood by 2030. The US ranked 16th alongside Germany, both scoring 7.38 in the 2013 list.
In the 1988 list, the Philippines ranked 24th out of 50 countries.
In the latest list, the Philippines scored 5.71, just a bit higher than that of emerging power and populous India (5.67), neighboring Vietnam (5.64), and Indonesia (5.54). The score is out of a maximum of ten.
The Philippines was tied with Sri Lanka, which suffered a steep fall in global competitiveness this year.
“We use the EIU’s economic forecasts to 2030, which is roughly when children born in 2013 will reach adulthood,” The Economist, which is the sister firm of EIU, said.
An article in The Economist explains that the index uses a set of parameters that links subjective takes on life with the more objective assessment of socio-political and economic factors such as crime, cost of living, human rights, literacy and others.
It said: “Being rich helps more than anything else, but it is not all that counts; things like crime, trust in public institutions and the health of family life matter too. In all, the index takes 11 statistically significant indicators into account. They are a mixed bunch: some are fixed factors, such as geography; others change only very slowly over time (demography, many social and cultural characteristics); and some factors depend on policies and the state of the world economy.”
Singapore (8.00) and Hong Kong (7.80) are the only Asian countries ranked in the top ten best countries for babies to be born in 2013.
A recent Gallup poll-study found Singaporeans to be the least likely in the world to report experiencing emotions of any kind on a daily basis, out of more than 150 countries.
The Philippines came out as the most emotional society in the world, with Latin American countries dominating the top of the list.
The Philippines’ third quarter gross domestic product (GDP) surprised many last Wednesday. Economic managers said the economy grew by 7.1%, beating forecasts.
The government's target for the whole year of 2013 is 6% to 7%.