Saturday October 25, 2014 Search
Weather | Athens
19o C
12o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Quality of life in Athens lowest in western Europe, survey suggests

Athens offers its residents the worst quality of life of any city in western Europe, according to the latest global survey from consultant group Mercer.

Earlier this year, the company’s researchers found that Athens was the world’s 78th most expensive city for non-locals, among 214 cities.

Vienna has the best quality of life of any city in the world and Baghdad the worst, Mercer found

The Austrian capital with 1.7 million residents came top of the survey for the fourth year in a row, boasting of a vibrant cultural scene alongside comprehensive health care and moderate but rising housing costs. Its opulent architecture from the time of the Habsburg empire makes it a tourist magnet.

The reliable public transport system costs just 1 euro (81 pence) a day for an annual pass in a city governed by left-leaning Social Democrats and environmentalist Greens.

Mercer conducts its annual survey to help companies and organisations set compensation for staff on international assignments. It uses 39 factors such as political stability, health care, education, crime, recreation and transport.

Anna Staribacher, a 24-year-old student, praised her home town's safe streets and abundance of parks and woodlands.

"Austria is a wealthy country, we have low unemployment and free university access. Living is affordable and prices are still moderate by international standards. But I wonder why people are still so grumpy all the time?"

Despite its sovereign debt crisis, Europe has 15 of the world's top 25 cities in the 2012 survey. Germany and Switzerland each have three in the top 10.

"Overall, European cities continue to have high quality of living as a result of a combination of increased stability, rising living standards and advanced city infrastructures,» said Slagin Parakatil, senior researcher at Mercer.

"But economic turmoil, political tension and high unemployment in some European countries and high levels of unemployment have continued to be problematic in the region."

Canadian cities dominated rankings in the Americas region, with Vancouver at number five retaining the top spot and Honolulu at 28 the most pleasant U.S. urban centre.

New Zealand's Auckland at number three is still atop the Asia Pacific region's charts, while Dubai at 73 gets best marks in the Middle East and Africa.

But that region also has 15 cities in the bottom 20, including Lagos, Nigeria; Bamako, Mali; Khartoum, Sudan; and N'Djamena, Chad. Iraq's capital Baghdad was ranked lowest in the world.

"The ongoing turmoil in many countries across North Africa and the Middle East has led to serious security issues for locals and expatriates,» Parakatil said. «Many countries continue to experience violence through political demonstrations that have sometimes developed into massive uprisings and led to serious instability within the region."

This is a far cry from Vienna, which has held the top spot in the Mercer rankings since 2009.

[Kathimerini English Edition & Reuters]

ekathimerini.com , Tuesday December 4, 2012 (13:08)  
Athens, Nicosia satisfied by EU leaders´ stance toward Ankara
Suspended policeman chief suspect in cousin’s murder
No decisions yet on Greek bailout, says Samaras
Prescription fines since 2012 reach 2 bln, says minister
TAIPED waits for green light from Eurostat
Eurostat has frozen the securitization of properties that the Hellenic Republic Asset Development Fund (TAIPED) had been planning. The project, drafted to bring some 400 million euros into t...
Trade deficit shrinks on big drop in imports
Greece’s trade deficit shrank 29.5 percent year-on-year in August as a result of the considerable 16.3 percent decline in imports, Hellenic Statistical Authority figures revealed on Friday. ...
Inside Business
BASKETBALL
A win is a win is a win for Olympiakos
A bad Olympiakos defeated a worse Laboral Kutxa 63-57 to make it two out of two in the Euroleague on Friday. In a game where the two teams had an overall field goal rate of about one in thre...
SOCCER
Panathinaikos snatches point at Eindhoven
Panathinaikos offered its fans a glimpse of its glorious past in European competitions snatching a draw at PSV Eindhoven, on an otherwise bad night for Greek soccer in the Europa League, as ...
Inside Sports
COMMENTARY
Tension for tension’s sake?
It is evident that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan feeds off tension. He would barely have achieved as much as he has – and prevailed – if he had not been so keen to confront a series...
EDITORIAL
Testing ground
The Regional Authority of Attica is a good testing ground for politicians who appear to thrive on accusations to prove whether they can actually solve major problems of a practical nature. T...
Inside Comment
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. A win is a win is a win for Olympiakos
2. TAIPED waits for green light from Eurostat
3. Trade deficit shrinks on big drop in imports
4. SMEs unable to claim subsidies
5. Taxes kept growing in second quarter
6. Thessaloniki Port expects 2014 to be record year
more news
Today
This Week
1. Woman killed in tram accident in Floisvo, south of Athens
2. Clocks to go back 1 hour on Sunday
3. Venizelos slams Turkey for 'flagrant violation of international law' off Cyprus
4. ECB vies for third time lucky in European stress tests
5. Cyprus GDP upgrade seen as boosting bailout exit plans
6. ECB bank assessment to show 6-billion-euro capital gap, Citi says
Today
This Week
1. The past, present and future of the Greek debt crisis
2. Greece’s closed society is central to its current malaise
3. Greece must stick to reforms, says Schaeuble
4. At least 11 banks to fail European stress tests, three in Greece, report says
5. Cyprus to block Turkey's EU talks after EEZ violation
6. Samaras’s crumbling Greek exit lacks backing from economists
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2014, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.