Happy People! The world's happiest country is...

The World Happiness Report examined 158 countries and is aimed at influencing government policy.

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play Switzerland emerges the happiest country in the world (BBC)
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Switzerland, the country with arguably the most reliable banking system (Swiss accounts, anyone?), great chocolates (think creamy Lindt) and fine timeless time pieces (Hello Swatch) is the happiest country in the world.

This is according to the third annual World Happiness index produced by the Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN), an initiative under the United Nations.

Once again, the Scandinavian region was ably represented on the Happiness index as Iceland, Denmark and Norway closely followed Switzerland on the list. Canada was also on the top spot of World's Happiest countries.

On the flip side, Togo, Burundi, Benin, Syria and Rwanda ranked the least happy countries in the world.

The World Happiness Report examined 158 countries and is aimed at influencing government policy.

The study bases its rankings on data from the Gallup World Poll and takes into account variables such as real GDP per capita, healthy life expectancy, corruption levels and social freedoms.

According to the report which was first launched in 2012 and is produced by people from academia, government and the private sector, "a rapidly increasing number of national and local governments are using happiness data and research in their search for policies that could enable people to live better lives".

Meanwhile Nigeria placed 78th on the list ahead of neighbours Ghana (114th) and Cameroon (133rd) while the United States placed 15th ahead of the United Kingdom (21st).

The top 10 happiest countries are:

1. Switzerland

2. Iceland

3. Denmark

4. Norway

5. Canada

6. Finland

7. Netherlands

8. Sweden

9. New Zealand

10. Australia


While the 10 least happy countries are:

10. Chad

9. Guinea

8. Ivory Coast

7. Burkina Faso

6. Afghanistan

5. Rwanda

4. Benin

3. Syria

2. Burundi

1. Togo

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