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Safest Countries In South America

Safest Countries In South America

Safety Amid the Vibrancy of South America

In the realm of personal safety, South America represents a remarkable spectrum of nations demonstrating different levels of peace, crime rates, and political stability. Each country in this multilingual, multicultural continent presents its own unique safety profile, begging for comprehensive exploration.

The Global Peace Index (GPI), produced by the Institute for Economics and Peace, is a critical tool for assessing and comparing safety levels across the continent. It measures safety based on 23 qualitative and quantitative indicators such as domestic and international conflicts, levels of militarization, and societal safety. 

There are key findings from the GPI data that provide notable insights into South America's safety landscape: 

  • According to the latest GPI, Uruguay tops the list as the safest country with a GPI score of 1.80.  Known for its high income economy, socially advanced policies, and a political system that supports sound governance, Uruguay sets a high standard for peace in the region.
  • Chile, known for its strong institutional foundations, secure infrastructures, and well-performing health and education systems, is the runner-up with a score of 1.84 on the GPI.
  • Argentina, with its rich cultural heritage and a significant focus on social programs, stands in the third position with a GPI score of 1.91.
  • At the other end, grappling with political instability and significant socio-economic challenges, Venezuela holds the lowest position in South America with a GPI score of 2.80, marking it as the region's least peaceful country.
  • Brazil and Colombia, despite being renowned for their vibrant cultures and economies, unfortunately show a higher GPI score reflecting lower peace standards due to internal issues such as crime and violence.

Understanding peace and safety across South America is crucial not just for potential visitors but also for global leaders and policymakers. The GPI assists in understanding where efforts need to be concentrated to ensure safety and security for all residents in this diverse continent. A close examination of these scores helps in identifying areas of improvement, emphasizing the importance of peace in fostering economic progress and social cohesion.

10 Safest Countries in South America

Coming in at first place as the safest country in South America is Uruguay, with a GPI score of 1.80. Owing to its advanced social policies, strong economy, and a robust political system, Uruguay leads the way in terms of peace and safety in the region.

Placing second is Chile, with an impressive GPI score of 1.84. The stability of Chile's institutions, its strong infrastructural framework, and its highly-regarded health and education sectors contribute greatly to its position.

The home of the tango, Argentina, is ranked as the third safest country in South America, garnering a GPI score of 1.91. In spite of some periodic social and economic upheavals, Argentina continues to maintain a high level of peace relative to many of its neighbors.

Ranking fourth and fifth respectively, Paraguay and Ecuador, have GPI scores of 1.98 and 1.99. Both countries have been steadily improving their infrastructure and social systems, which is reflected in their GPI ranking.

Closely following is Bolivia, with a GPI score of 1.99, sharing its fifth place with Ecuador. Bolivia's efforts towards social development, despite its economic constraints, have been remarkable.

Peru takes the seventh place with a GPI score of 2.09. The country has made strides in reducing crime and promoting social cohesion, despite ongoing challenges.

Potentially surprising to some, Guyana ranks eight in the South America safety ranking with a GPI score of 2.14. While still grappling with many development challenges, Guyana's relative political stability contributes to its positioning.

Brazil and Colombia are ninth and tenth with GPI scores of 2.47 and 2.73 respectively. These vibrant countries are renowned for their rich cultures and strong economies, but internal issues involving crime and violence have impacted their peace scores.

10 safest countries in South America are:

  1. Uruguay - 1.80 
  2. Chile - 1.84 
  3. Argentina - 1.91 
  4. Paraguay - 1.98 
  5. Ecuador - 1.99 
  6. Bolivia - 1.99 
  7. Peru - 2.09 
  8. Guyana - 2.14 
  9. Brazil - 2.47
  10. Colombia - 2.73

By Country

Full Data Set

The data points presented are defined as follows:

  • Global Peace Index (GPI) - A composite index measuring the peacefulness of countries made up of 23 quantitative and qualitative indicators each weighted on a scale of 1-5. The lower the score the more peaceful the country.

To sort the data in the table, click on the column headers.

Frequently Asked Questions


Year: 2022

Source: - Institute for Economics and Peace

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