The 2013 Global Peace Index (GPI) shows that the world has become less peaceful, with a sharp rise in the number of homicides.
– The world has become 5% less peaceful since 2008
– Europe is the most peaceful region, with 13 of the top 20 most peaceful countries
– War ravaged Afghanistan returns to the bottom of the index
– Syria’s GPI score has fallen by 70% sine 2008
– The total economic impact of containing violence is estimated to be US$9.46 trillion in 2012
The top three most peaceful countries are Iceland, Denmark and New Zealand. Small and stable democracies make up the top ten most peaceful countries. With a newly elected government and a steady recovery from the 2011 turmoil, Libya had the biggest improvement in peace score since last year. The three least peaceful countries are Afghanistan, Somalia and Syria.
Syria’s score dropped by the largest margin, with the biggest ever score deterioration in the history of the GPI.
Since the 2008, 110 countries have become less peaceful, while 48 have improved their score. Three main factors that have contributed to the deterioration in peace scores from 2012-2013: the number of homicides, military expenditure as a percentage of GDP and political instability.
The number of deaths from internal conflicts has risen significantly. In the past year, the drug war in Mexico claimed twice as many lives as the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The total economic impact of containing violence is equivalent to 11% of global GDP, or US $9.46 trillion. If the world could reduce the cost of violence by 50% it would generate enough money to repay the debt of the developing world, provide enough money for the European stability mechanism, and fund the additional amount required to fund the Millennium Development Goals.