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What are the best and worst countries for old people to live?

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World map showing best and worst countries for old people to live in

The population around the world is ageing. This is mainly due to the fact that the life expectancy of the population has increased and fertility rates have decreased. It is estimated that people who are more than 60 years of age currently number 901 million. This is around 12.3 percent of the world population. In the years to come, the number of people aged 60 and above would increase. By 2030, they would number 1.4 billion, which would be around 16.5 percent of the global population, and by 2050 2.1 billion, some 21.5 percent of the world population. Thus the well-being of the older population has become a priority for many nations around the world. However, the social and economic well-being of people varies from nation to nation. While some countries have policies and programs in place which promote the social and economic well-being of old people, there are others that do not.

To assess the state of the economic as well as the social well-being of the older people, in 2015, HelpAge International came up with the Global AgeWatch Index. The index has ranked 96 nations around the world. The index measures the well-being of the older people in four key areas. These are – personal, capability, an enabling environment, health and income security.

According to the 2015 Global AgeWatch Index, Switzerland is the best country for old people to live in. Out of the 96 countries mentioned in the list, Switzerland is ranked first. Norway comes second, while Sweden is ranked third. Germany, Canada, the Netherlands, Iceland, Japan and the United States are ranked between 4 and 9. These nations have made it to the top ranks as they have a number of programs and policies that lead to the economic and social well-being of the older people.

The countries, which are ranked between 10 and 30 are the United Kingdom, New Zealand, France, Australia, Belgium, Chile, Costa Rica, among others. China, Albania, South Korea, Russia, Bangladesh, Brazil, etc, have scored between 50 and 70. Countries that have ranked low on the index and have scored between 70 and 90 are India, South Africa, Greece, Nigeria, Iraq, Morocco, and a few other nations.

Zambia, Tanzania, Pakistan, Palestine, Mozambique, Malawi and Afghanistan are some nations that are worst for the old people to live in. These nations have scores of 90 and above. Of these, Afghanistan is placed at the bottom of the table and is ranked 96. These nations have low scoring as there are a very few local or national policies in these countries that aim at promoting the well-being of old people.

The table below provides information on how nations rank on the 2015 Global AgeWatch Index.

Best Ranked Country
1 Switzerland
2 Norway
3 Sweden
4 Germany
5 Canada
6 Netherlands
7 Iceland
8 Japan
9 United States of America
10 United Kingdom
11 Denmark
12 New Zealand
13 Austria
14 Finland
15 Ireland
16 France
17 Australia
18 Israel
19 Luxembourg
20 Panama
21 Chile
22 Czech Republic
23 Estonia
24 Belgium
25 Spain
26 Slovenia
27 Uruguay
28 Costa Rica
29 Georgia
30 Cyprus
31 Argentina
32 Poland
33 Mexico
34 Thailand
35 Latvia
36 Colombia
37 Italy
38 Portugal
39 Hungary
40 Slovakia
41 Vietnam
42 Mauritius
43 Armenia
44 Ecuador
45 Romania
46 Sri Lanka
47 Malta
48 Peru
49 Bulgaria
50 Philippines
51 Kyrgyzstan
52 China
53 Albania
54 El Salvador
55 Bolivia
56 Brazil
57 Nicaragua
58 Tajikistan
59 Guatemala
60 Korea, South
61 Croatia
62 Dominican Republic
63 Lithuania
64 Belarus
65 Russia
66 Serbia
67 Bangladesh
68 Montenegro
69 Paraguay
70 Nepal
71 India
72 Mongolia
73 Ukraine
74 Indonesia
75 Turkey
76 Venezuela
77 Moldova
78 South Africa
79 Greece
80 Cambodia
81 Ghana
82 Honduras
83 Laos
84 Morocco
85 Jordan
86 Nigeria
87 Iraq
88 Uganda
89 Rwanda
90 Zambia
91 Tanzania
92 Pakistan
93 Palestine
94 Mozambique
95 Malawi
96 Afghanistan

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