17 October 2018
A beggar seeks alms at a shopping mall in Shanghai. Photo: VOA News
A beggar seeks alms at a shopping mall in Shanghai. Photo: VOA News

China least generous country in the world: poll

China is the least generous country in the world, according to a worldwide survey on generosity by the Charities Aid Foundation.

The 2016 CAF World Giving Index is based on a poll of 1,000 respondents from 140 countries and regions, asking them if in the last month they helped a stranger, donated money to charity or volunteered their time.

China ranked 140th place in the poll, behind Palestine, Yemen, Greece and the Democratic Republic of Congo, lifestyle website Shanghaiist reports.

Only 24 percent of Chinese respondents said they had helped a stranger in the past month, 6 percent said they had donated to charity, and also only 6 percent said they had volunteered their time.

Over a period of five years, the index places Hong Kong at No. 20 with an overall score of 45 percent: 56 percent for helping a stranger, 63 percent for donating money, and 15 percent for donating time.

Myanmar tops the index for the third year running with a score of 70 percent, followed by the United States (61 percent) and Australia (60 percent).

The United Kingdom is the most generous country in Europe with a score of 54 percent, followed by Ireland (54 percent) and the Netherlands (52 percent).

In many countries, men are significantly more likely than women to engage in volunteering or helping a stranger, the CAF survey finds.

However, at the global average level, there’s little difference between men and women when it comes to donating money.

Iraq ranks highest for helping a stranger for the second year running.

That Myanmar topped the worldwide survey may raise some eyebrows, considering that it is classified by the World Bank as a “lower middle income” country.

“It confounds assumptions about the association between wealth and generosity,” CFA said in its report. “Inevitably, such an achievement will be contrasted with reports about the ongoing suffering, and contested rights of the Rohingya people.”

But it notes that the index measures only the charitable activities of the general population and does not take wider issues affecting society into account.

“As such, we make no attempt to rationalize negative or mitigating factors in the World
Giving Index,” the report said.

Here’s the top 10 on the 2016 CAF World Giving Index:

1) Myanmar

2) United States

3) Australia

4) New Zealand

5) Sri Lanka

6) Canada

7) Indonesia

8) United Kingdom

9) Ireland

10) United Arab Emirates

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