Date
12 November 2019
Hong Kong has slipped to the 20th position on the EIU's safe cities ranking, down from No. 9 in a previous survey in 2017. Photo: Reuters
Hong Kong has slipped to the 20th position on the EIU's safe cities ranking, down from No. 9 in a previous survey in 2017. Photo: Reuters

Hong Kong down 11 notches to No. 20 on list of safest cities

Hong Kong has seen its position drop significantly on a list of the world’s safest cities while key regional rival Singapore held its ground as second safest metropolis in the world, edged out only by Tokyo, which maintained its No.1 rank.

According to the 2019 Safe Cities Index (SCI) released by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) on Thursday, Hong Kong stood in the 20th position among 60 cities in the world, down from the No. 9 rank it received in a similar survey done two years ago.

Hong Kong saw its overall score come in at 83.7 in the EIU’s latest survey, compared to 92 for Tokyo, 91.5 for Singapore and 90.9 for Osaka, which bagged the third spot overall.

The index, compiled biennially by the EIU, ranks cities around the word, measuring the safety of each city on indicators that fall into four broad categories: digital security, health security, infrastructure security and personal security.

Personal security was the only category in which Hong Kong made the top three in the latest survey.

As for the other three, Hong Kong was No. 27 in health security, No. 22 in digital security and No. 18 in infrastructure security.

It is worth noting that the survey was based on data before the recent violent incidents and social disturbances in the city following the extradition bill crisis.

In its report, the EIU said that corruption and organized crime “are still a problem” for Hong Kong and Tokyo, “although they are typically better than in most other index cities.”

In the latest Safe Cities list, the top three rankers — Tokyo, Singapore and Osaka — were followed by Amsterdam in the 4th position and Sydney in the 5th spot.

Toronto, Washington D.C., Copenhagen, Seoul and Melbourne took the next five positions to figure in the Top 10.

As far as mainland Chinese cities are concerned, Beijing and Shanghai were ranked No. 31 and No. 32, respectively, with the overall scores of both below the average overall score.

The EIU concluded from the survey results that “richer urban areas tend to be safer ones”, with the main reasons including high-quality infrastructure and advanced medical systems.

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