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* Sri Lanka has become more peaceful, ranks 105 in Global Peace Index out of 162 countries
Thu, Jun 19, 2014, 10:35 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

June 19, Colombo: Sri Lanka has become more peaceful and ranked better in this year's Global Peace Index that was released yesterday.

Sri Lanka ranks at 105th place in this year's Global Peace Index (GPI) which ranked 162 nations according to their 'absence of violence'.

The GPI, the world's leading measure of national peacefulness, ranked Sri Lanka 110th in 2013 out of 162 countries.

Sri Lanka received a Global Peace Index score of 2.197 this year due to the contributions from militarization, society and security and domestic and international conflicts. The national cost of violence was estimated at US$ 6.37 billion

The GPI is developed by Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP) under the guidance of an international panel of independent experts with data collated and calculated by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).

It is composed of 22 indicators, ranging from a nation's level of military expenditure to its relations with neighboring countries and the percentage of prison population.

The 2014 Global Peace Index shows that the world has become less peaceful as 111 countries have deteriorated in levels of peace since 2008, while only 52 have improved.

In the South Asian region Sri Lanka ranked at fourth behind Bhutan (16), Nepal (76) and Bangladesh (98) in the order and one place above India which ranked at 143. Pakistan (154) and Afghanistan (161) ranked below India in that order.

Iceland was the most peaceful in this year's list. New Zealand at 4th and Japan at 8th topped the Asia-Pacific region while Bhutan topped the South Asia at 16th place. Syria displaced Afghanistan as the world's least peaceful nation.

The United States ranked just above Sri Lanka at 101st place. Although U.S. is one of the highest-ranking countries in the world in terms of democracy, it also held back by restrictions to civil liberties tied to anti-terrorism efforts, the GPI report said.

The most peaceful region of the world continues to be Europe while the least peaceful region is South Asia.

Global violence impacted the global economy by US$9.8 trillion or 11.3% of GDP in the last year, an increase of US$179 billion YOY, through upward revisions of China's military expenditure and the number and intensity of internal conflicts, the GPI report said.

"This is resulting in very real costs to the world economy; increases in the global economic impact of violence and its containment are equivalent to 19% of global economic growth from 2012 to 2013. To put this in perspective, this is around $1,350 per person. The danger is that we fall into a negative cycle: low economic growth leads to higher levels of violence, the containment of which produces lower economic growth," Steve Killelea, founder and Executive Chairman of the IEP said.

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