June 11, 2021 | By Bronwen Largier

Australia’s pandemic measures have boosted our global reputation according to The Economist Intelligence Unit’s latest Global Liveability Index.

For the first time in some years, there are four Australian cities in the top 10 – Adelaide at number three, Perth ranked sixth, Melbourne in eighth spot and Brisbane rounding out the top 10. Sydney is ranked 11th.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has taken a heavy toll on global liveability,” says Upasana Dutt, head of Global Liveability at the Economist Intelligence Unit.

“Cities across the world are now much less liveable than they were before the pandemic began, and we’ve seen that regions such as Europe have been hit particularly hard.

“The cities that have risen to the top of the rankings this year are largely the ones that have taken stringent measures to contain the pandemic.

“New Zealand’s tough lockdown allowed their society to re-open and enabled citizens of cities like Auckland and Wellington to enjoy a lifestyle that looked similar to pre-pandemic life.”

Auckland was ranked number one for the first time, and with Wellington sitting at number four, ANZ cities made up the majority of the top 10 of the world’s most liveable cities.

Given the hardships of the last 15 months in Melbourne including three lockdowns which rank amongst the strictest in the world, it’s impressive to see it still ranked inside the top 10 – and ahead of Sydney – although this may also be related to the fact that data for this year’s rankings was collected in late February and March this year.

When you consider pure numbers, New South Wales’ achievement in remaining open through the pandemic to date is impressive.

Sydney takes up to 3,010 international arrivals into its quarantine program each week, more than double any other Australian city, and remains the only one of the nation’s five most populous metropolitan areas to have avoided a city-wide lockdown in the last year.