Ghana has been ranked as the third most peaceful African country and the 43rd most peaceful country in the world by the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP).
This was contained in the 14th edition of the Global Peace Index (GPI), which ranks 163 independent states and territories according to their level of peacefulness.
Ghana moved up one place from the 2019 GPI and is now behind only Mauritius (1st) and Botswana (2nd) in sub-Saharan Africa. Meanwhile, South Sudan remains the least peaceful country in sub-Saharan Africa.
Ghana’s rise on the rankings was despite Sub-Saharan Africa recording a slight fall in peacefulness on the 2020 GPI, with an overall score deterioration of 0.5 per cent.
Twenty countries in the region improved in peacefulness while 24 deteriorated.
The region’s three largest improvers in peacefulness in the last year were South Africa, Cote d’Ivoire and Equatorial Guinea, all of which recorded improvements of more than six per cent.
Benin experienced the biggest deterioration of any country in the world, falling 34 places in the ranking to 106th on the 2020 GPI.
Sporadic clashes erupted across the country following the election in April 2019, in which the opposition party was effectively banned, leading to a deterioration in political instability.
Niger recorded the second largest deterioration in the region. Over the last year, cross-border armed robberies and violent crime by gangs led to a deterioration on the violent crime indicator.
According to the index, civil unrest in sub-Saharan Africa rose by more than 800 per cent over the period, from 32 riots and protests in 2011 to 292 in 2018.
Iceland remains the most peaceful country in the world, a position it has held since 2008. It is joined at the top of the index by New Zealand, Austria, Portugal, and Denmark.
Afghanistan is the least peaceful country in the world for the second year in a row, followed by Syria, Iraq, South Sudan and Yemen. All, except Yemen, have been ranked amongst the five least peaceful since at least 2015.
Only two of the nine regions in the world became more peaceful over the past year. The greatest improvement occurred in the Russia and Eurasia region, followed by North America. North America was the only region to record improvements across all three domains, while Russia and Eurasia recorded improvements in Ongoing Conflict and Safety and Security, but a deterioration on the Militarisation domain.
South America and Central America and the Caribbean recorded the largest and second-largest deterioration on the 2020 GPI. While South America’s average deterioration in peacefulness was driven by deteriorations on Militarisation and Safety and Security, the fall in peacefulness in Central America and the Caribbean was driven by changes in Ongoing Conflict.
About the GPI
Produced by the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP), the GPI is a measure of global peacefulness. The report presents a data-driven analysis of trends in peace, its economic value, and how to develop peaceful societies.
The GPI covers 99.7 per cent of the world’s population, using 23 qualitative and quantitative indicators from highly respected sources, and measures the state of peace across three domains: the level of Societal Safety and Security; the extent of Ongoing Domestic and International Conflict; and the degree of Militarisation.
Read the Global Peace Index below;