The iconic Dubai Frame, which offers a 360-degree view of old and new Dubai, and can accommodate up to 1,800 visitors a day. Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/Gulf News

Dubai The UAE has climbed 12 spots to rank as the 45th most-peaceful country of 163 states and territories worldwide, according to the Global Peace Index being released in London on Wednesday.

The improved standing in the 12th annual report is among only a handful of other countries in the index to record double-digit jumps in rankings, according to Index authors Sydney-based Institute for Economics and Peace.

The Gambia recorded the highest improvement in peace moving up 35 rankings while Liberia ranked second by climbing 27 spots.

Peace means prosperity

Steve Killelea, institute founder and executive chairman, told Gulf News in an exclusive interview from London on Tuesday that the UAE’s rise will bode well for the Emirates given that peaceful countries historically enjoy sound levels of economic prosperity.

“What’s important is that it’s recognition of the progress the UAE is making in the region,” Killelea said.

The UAE is earnestly preparing for post-oil era through economic diversification and massive investments in renewable energy. Here, a number of electric vehicles (EVs) are shown during the launch ceremony of 1,500-km EV road trip from the UAE to Oman, organised as part of the Abu Dhabi Sustainability week 2018 held earlier this year at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre. Abdul Rahman/Gulf News

“We find there is a direct relationship – a peace dividend – between countries that are high in peace and economic development.”

Speaking of the UAE’s improved global peace standing, Killelea said “I think we would describe it as a substantial increase … one of the largest climbs on the index.”

The jump places the UAE just inside the second quarter of all countries studied.

Iceland earned top spot globally as the most peaceful country in the world while in the Middle East Kuwait was ranked regionally as first to rank 42nd globally, just ahead of the UAE followed by Qatar (56), Morocco (71) and Oman (73).

 A view of Majaz Waterfront Park in Sharjah, one of the seven emirates comprising the United Arab Emirates. The popular park lies next to Buhaira Corniche. Sharjah is also known for its many cultural attractions and festivals.  Atiq-Ur-Rehman/Gulf News

Qatar fell 26 spots in peacefulness to 84th ranking, according to the report.

“Qatar experienced the single largest deterioration in peacefulness, as the political and economic boycott placed on it by the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Bahrain led to deteriorations in relations with neighbouring countries and political instability,” the report said.