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How do nations rank in terms of freedom of press? - Answers

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How do nations rank in terms of freedom of press?

World map depicting freedom of press

The lofty ideals in a ‘Constitution’ are not always in coordination to the bitter realities of nations and their governance. What is freedom, if there is no freedom of speech, media or journalism? A free press is one of the most significant pillars of democracy, as a democratic nation would not function properly, if the people are not informed well about the events happening around them or internationally. Information that is availed to people via media is crucial for them to form rational opinions.

For decades, the media has played a pivotal role for many nations and it has kept the citizens of the country updated about the various social and economic issues that face their nations. Democracy always places emphasis on the importance of the freedom of the press, yet in totalitarian or dictatorial regimes, many times the press is often suppressed.

Reporters Without Borders publishes the World Press Freedom Index each year, to determine the press freedom records of every country. The report not only reflects the freedom of journalists and news organizations, but it also contributes information regarding the roles that are played by the governments in every country, in order to respect the freedom of media. Countries score between 0 to 100, which means that “0” is the best score, and “100” is the worst. The score is calculated as per the restrictions for press in each country.

According to the World Press Freedom Index 2018, Norway is the best country when it comes to the freedom of the press. The nation was placed at the top position, with a score of 7.63. Sweden ranked second with a score of 8.31, while Netherlands is at the third spot, scoring 10.01. Finland and Switzerland occupy fourth and fifth position. Since the top five countries are European nations, it suggests how journalism and media in the region enjoy good deal of freedom.  Some of the other prominent countries, where press relishes a better freedom, and scored less than 20 were New Zealand, Belgium, Iceland, Ireland, Germany, Australia, Canada and a few others.

Countries such as France, the United Kingdom, the United States, Romania, Italy, South Korea, Japan, Poland, Nigeria, Afghanistan, and many other nations scored between 20 and 40. Among the BRICS nations, press in South Africa enjoyed the best freedom, and has a score of 20.39. The lowest ranked country among BRICS nations was China with a score of 78.29. India, Russia and Brazil had a score of 43.24, 49.96 and 31.2.

The countries that are ranked worst in the World Freedom Press Index 2018 are Syria, Turkmenistan, Eritrea and North Korea, with North Korea having the worst score of 88.87.

For a better understanding of how each nation has scored on the World Freedom Press Index, refer to the table below.

Rank Country Scores
1 Norway 7.63
2 Sweden 8.31
3 Netherlands 10.01
4 Finland 10.26
5 Switzerland 11.27
6 Jamaica 11.33
7 Belgium 13.16
8 New Zealand 13.62
9 Denmark 13.99
10 Costa Rica 14.01
11 Austria 14.04
12 Estonia 14.08
13 Iceland 14.10
14 Portugal 14.17
15 Germany 14.39
16 Ireland 14.59
17 Luxembourg 14.72
18 Canada 15.28
19 Australia 15.46
20 Uruguay 15.56
21 Surinam 16.44
22 Samoa 16.69
23 Ghana 18.41
24 Latvia 19.63
25 Cyprus 19.85
26 Namibia 20.24
27 Slovakia 20.26
28 South Africa 20.39
29 Cabo Verde 20.39
30 Liechtenstein 20.49
31 Spain 20.51
32 Slovenia 21.69
33 France 21.87
34 Czech Republic 21.89
35 Lithuania 22.20
36 Andorra 22.21
37 Chile 22.69
38 Trinidad and Tobago 22.79
39 United Kingdom 23.25
40 Burkina Faso 23.33
41 Taiwan 23.36
42 South Korea 23.51
43 Romania 23.65
44 United States 23.73
45 Italy 24.12
46 Belize 24.55
47 Botswana 25.29
48 Comoros 25.30
49 Senegal 25.61
50 Tonga 25.68
51 Argentina 26.05
52 Papua New Guinea 26.19
53 Madagascar 26.2
54 Guyana 26.25
55 Mauritius 26.45
56 Fiji 26.55
57 Poland 26.59
58 Dominican Republic 26.79
59 Haïti 26.82
60 Georgia 27.34
61 Bosnia-Herzegovina 27.37
62 Niger 27.40
63 Malawi 27.43
64 Malta 27.44
65 El Salvador 27.78
66 Japan 28.64
67 Lesotho 28.78
68 Croatia 28.94
69 Hong Kong 29.04
70 Mongolia 29.05
71 Mauritania 29.09
72 Hungary 29.11
73 Greece 29.19
74 Albania 29.49
75 Serbia 29.58
76 Northern Cyprus 29.59
77 Kosovo 29.61
78 Sierra Leone 29.98
79 Armenia 29.99
80 Moldova 30.01
81 Côte d’Ivoire 30.08
82 Guinea Bissau 30.09
83 Benin 30.16
84 Seychelles 30.17
85 Togo 30.23
86 Israel 30.26
87 Peru 30.27
88 Liberia 30.33
89 Nicaragua 30.41
90 Panama 30.56
91 Ecuador 30.56
92 Tanzania 30.65
93 Bhutan 30.73
94 East Timor 30.81
95 Kenya 30.82
96 Tunisia 30.91
97 Kyrgyzstan 31.00
98 Mozambique 31.12
99 Lebanon 31.15
100 Ukraine 31.16
101 Brazil 31.2
102 Montenegro 31.21
103 Guinea 31.9
104 Kuwait 31.91
105 Nepal 32.05
106 Paraguay 32.32
107 Gabon 32.37
108 Republic of North Macedonia 32.43
109 Bolivia 32.45
110 Bulgaria 35.22
111 Central African Republic 35.25
112 Zambia 35.36
113 Congo-Brazzaville 35.42
114 Mali 36.15
115 Guatemala 36.17
116 Uganda 36.77
117 Afghanistan 37.28
118 Nigeria 37.41
119 Maldives 37.95
120 Angola 38.35
121 Gambia 38.36
122 Chad 38.45
123 Indonesia 39.68
124 Qatar 40.16
125 Zimbabwe 40.53
126 Oman 40.67
127 United Arab Emirates 40.86
128 Cameroon 40.92
129 Colombia 41.03
130 Sri Lanka 41.37
131 Jordan 41.71
132 Philippines 42.53
133 Palestine 42.96
134 Morocco / Western Sahara 43.13
135 Algeria 43.13
136 Myanmar 43.15
137 India 43.24
138 Pakistan 43.24
139 Thailand 44.31
140 Honduras 45.23
141 Cambodia 45.90
142 Venezuela 46.03
143 South Sudan 46.88
144 Malaysia 47.41
145 Bangladesh 48.62
146 Mexico 48.91
147 Russia 49.96
148 Tajikistan 50.06
149 Ethiopia 50.17
150 Singapore 50.95
151 Swaziland 51.46
152 Brunei 51.48
153 Democratic Republic of Congo 51.60
154 Belarus 52.59
155 Rwanda 52.90
156 Turkey 53.50
157 Kazakhstan 54.41
158 Burundi 55.26
159 Iraq 56.56
160 Egypt 56.72
161 Libya 56.79
162 Azerbaijan 59.73
163 Iran 60.71
164 Uzbekistan 60.84
165 Bahrain 60.85
166 Yemen 62.23
167 Somalia 63.04
168 Saudi Arabia 63.13
169 Laos 66.41
170 Equatorial Guinea 66.47
171 Cuba 68.90
172 Djibouti 70.77
173 Sudan 71.13
174 Vietnam 75.05
175 China 78.29
176 Syria 79.22
177 Turkmenistan 84.20
178 Eritrea 84.24
179 North Korea 88.87

 

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