Australia tops good life index

Australia tops good life index

Australia may just be the best place in the world to live.

A comparison by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development of the richest and fastest growing countries ranked Australia the No.1 nation on a range of indicators.

The How's Life? study went beyond economics to areas such as life expectancy, hours worked and pollution. Australia was among the best in every one. Australians have a high level of disposable income and increasing household wealth.

They enjoy one of the longest life expectancies at above 83. With the Americans, New Zealanders and Canadians, Australians had the highest proportion of people reporting good or very good health.

Australia has low homicide and assault rates and Australians are likely to say they are satisfied with their life.

The ranking was no surprise to Lee Buckingham, 43, a Londoner who visited Perth on holiday and never returned home.

"Why would I want to go back," he said. "You can go to the pub, the beach, into the city - you've got so many different things you can do."

People say it’s boring but it’s really not.”

Mr Buckingham was at Kings Park with a group of colleagues yesterday, squeezing in half an hour of exercise before the Melbourne Cup.

The Iluka resident said the “lucky country” moniker still rang true.

“I don’t think there’s any other country in the world where you can run around during your lunchtime and get this view,” he said.

Kerrie Smith, a 35-year-old from Osborne Park, said Australia’s coastal lifestyle was hard to beat.

“We predominantly live around the water in Australia because the middle of the country’s just desert,” she said.

“Being around beaches and coastal environments, I think you’re a little bit more positive.”

Australia’s only shortcoming was almost 15 per cent worked more than 50 hours a week, fewer only than Turkey, Mexico, Israel and Chile.

The country also was below the OECD average on the hours spent every day devoted to leisure or personal care.

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