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Colombo amongst worst cities

22 February 2011 03:00 am - 119     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}


Colombo has been ranked among the worst 10 livable cities in the world by the Economist Intelligence Unit's (EIU) Liveability Survey released this month. According to the survey, Colombo is placed 131 out of 140 cities.

The index ranks cities with an overall rating which is then subdivided into categories of Stability, Healthcare, Culture & Environment, Education and Infrastructure- on a scale from 100 to 0 with hundred being the "ideal" and zero "intolerable".

According to the survey, "the concept of liveability is simple: it assesses which locations around the world provide the best or the worst living conditions."

Interestingly the highest ranking cities are located in Australia and Canada- the countries with the largest Sri Lankan Diaspora. Vancouver, Canada is at the top, followed by Melbourne. Toronto, Calgary, Sydney, Perth and Adelaide fall within the top ten. Other top ten contenders include Auckland (New Zealand), Helsinki (Finland) and Vienna (Austria). 

Sri Lanka heads the low-rankers with an overall rating of 48.5 followed by Dakar (Senegal), Tehran (Iran), Douala (Cameroon), Karachi (Pakistan), Algiers (Algeria), Lagos (Nigeria), Port Moresby (Papua New Guinea) and Dhaka (Bangladesh) respectively. The bottom spot is held with an overall rating of 37.5 by Harare, Zimbabwe.

Despite heavy investments on infrastructure in the year 2010, Colombo received just an average satisfactory 51.8 points for infrastructure. The infrastructure component judges transport, quality of road network, quality of public transport, quality of regional or international links and availability of good quality housing and utilities; quality of energy provision, quality of water provision, and quality of telecommunications infrastructure.

Despite the Ministry of Defense' taking over of the Urban Development Authority in May 2010, Colombo has received only a score of 45 for stability and 47.7 for culture and environment. The culture aspect looks into corruption, discomfort to travelers, social/religious restrictions and the level of censorship. 

Could major development projects such as the Colombo seafront expansion and the construction of Shangri-La hotel boost the liveability ranking of the capital city, which is eyeing to become  Asia's little miracle? (Dianne Silva)

  Comments - 119

  • Handipora Tuesday, 22 February 2011 03:02 AM

    My God, where do we stand now? Mr. Omar Kamil, where do you stand now????

    Handipora Tuesday, 22 February 2011 03:05 AM

    At this rate, achieving the dream Asia's Little Miracle will be a distant Mirage.

    Indian Tuesday, 22 February 2011 03:16 AM

    Why Indian cities are not among the worst? I thought Colombo is much better than over crowded Indian cities!

    Dinesh Tuesday, 22 February 2011 03:33 AM

    Accept the truth!!! It is done Economist Intelligence unit not by Presidents goverment ministers.

    JaY Tuesday, 22 February 2011 03:37 AM

    what about indian metro's pakistan cities and i'm sure many more in south america , aftrica & Asia?
    i think CMB is heaven compared to some of these cities!

    rosh Tuesday, 22 February 2011 03:32 AM

    Very true. Hope this would be an eye opener

    Pussy Cat Tuesday, 22 February 2011 03:40 AM

    If you ask ministers they will say, these predictions are biased and the analyst are LTTE supporters!

    Tharaka Chanaka Tuesday, 22 February 2011 03:41 AM

    What do you expect when a ex 3-wheel driver is running the show?

    lankaman Tuesday, 22 February 2011 03:42 AM

    wake up call to evict shanties and illegal squatters out of city, beautify the place and put police with backbone onto streets

    Ian Tuesday, 22 February 2011 03:58 AM

    Survey is 100% correct all Sri Lankan politicians are responsible for this disaster !

    Thilanga Tuesday, 22 February 2011 03:52 AM


    Anver Tuesday, 22 February 2011 04:00 AM

    How can it be a good city when there are no properly elected people to run its affairs and everything is done as per whims and fancies of certain politicians?

    sri gorilla Tuesday, 22 February 2011 04:00 AM

    Rome was not built in one day...people will just have to wait...sorting out slums,unplanned structures will take time

    sltk2004 Tuesday, 22 February 2011 04:02 AM

    This is an international conspiracy to tarnish our image...

    dass Tuesday, 22 February 2011 04:03 AM

    That is why now it is called the Wonder of Asia.
    Once it get to the 140th place it will be the wonder of world.

    FDO Tuesday, 22 February 2011 03:58 AM


    Guru Tuesday, 22 February 2011 04:09 AM


    Denzil Tuesday, 22 February 2011 04:11 AM

    Miracle of asia !!!!He He !!

    Sarath Tuesday, 22 February 2011 04:11 AM

    Colombo: a symbolic niche of "third-class politics" of the third world cities. It has been victimized to both dependent global system and uncivilized local politics.

    Sanjeeva Tuesday, 22 February 2011 04:18 AM

    Will this too be published on the Headlines of Government Newspapers, and telecast on their TV channels?

    Lakmal Tuesday, 22 February 2011 04:20 AM

    Miracle of Asia..........

    Piratheepan Tuesday, 22 February 2011 04:28 AM

    For us Colombo is a best city?????

    TMA Tuesday, 22 February 2011 04:28 AM

    lol! few months ago when these international surveys gave different results we were cheering. Now is this conspiracy? hahaha

    danny Tuesday, 22 February 2011 04:24 AM


    kassa Tuesday, 22 February 2011 04:28 AM

    what else.

    Darwin Tuesday, 22 February 2011 04:37 AM

    The response: "International conspiracy to discredit the government. of Sri Lanka".

    rajitha Tuesday, 22 February 2011 04:39 AM

    Soon to be miracle of Asia

    Paul Tuesday, 22 February 2011 04:39 AM

    Let's give them one more year to make Colombo the 'Best Tourist Destination' in the world and see the ratings next year.OR they might turn it into another "Miracle of Asia".

    Hybrid Tuesday, 22 February 2011 04:45 AM

    This is the work of the opposition!!!! Ha Ha!!. This is like looking up and spitting.

    Samarasinghe Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:00 AM

    Who should be blamed, only the government? Ranil made a blunder here by appointing a taxi fellow for the mayor position to destroy the image of the country. Now will take lots of time to rebuild.

    Ravana Tuesday, 22 February 2011 04:56 AM

    What ever anyone say we are stuck with it aren't we ? If so WE have to change it without NATO.

    No Action Talk Only !

    KIRI PUTHA Tuesday, 22 February 2011 04:56 AM


    Chintha Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:04 AM

    this reports is joke , you should go and see Mumbai and Chennai , living hells . Maybe this research done by an indian firm , I bet on this . India wants to show that Sri Lanka is worse than them.

    Konde bendapu china Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:04 AM

    what ever they say Indian,Pakistan,Bangladesh cities much much worst than Colombo

    Pain in the Gluteus Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:04 AM

    Rubbish indeed! See and smell that stinking eyesore across from Arpico in Maharagama. Look at the rubbish floating in the canals and swept into the drains alongside the streets.

    Anver Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:05 AM

    I thought he has given up the job long ago and back to his 3 wheeler.

    WEERAWANSA Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:05 AM

    Good point to get the colombo municipal council under an authority. hmmmmmmmm.

    AJ - DXB Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:04 AM

    Good news for the bros. eradicate all shantes and sell all prime lands of Colombo to Chinese and Indians or any highest "jarava giving" bidders

    TD Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:11 AM

    Very true.

    JUNIOR CITIZEN Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:12 AM

    its not a matter of who did it we have seen hundreds of worst cities in asia

    kumara Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:06 AM

    seems somebody wants to stop country's tourism boom....

    Citizen Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:25 AM

    We all know what Tamils are doing and LTTE.

    malkanthi Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:26 AM

    So that's why the UDA is demolishing all shanties and unauthorised construction to pave way to built a Miracle of Asia! We got to support this effort wholeheartedly!

    A.M.Hassan Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:28 AM

    Most of the people look happy about it. However, think who ever the politician it is also our duty to keep the city clean and up to standers before we point the finger to the politician. I respect about your political wives but do not try to blame the others every time and try to maintain voluble comments here. - Hassan Abu Dhabi

    Appuhami Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:32 AM


    Colombo Putha.. Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:27 AM

    This what happen when you put trishaw drivers to manage the city...!!! I think these people would have seen the moring traffic mess in the city ....Lets maintain this status to achive miracle of asia

    TMA Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:37 AM

    Have U visited Colombo recently. Even as a tourist?

    kaputakukula Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:39 AM

    This is not true! This is a conspiracy against MR's government. They are traitors, LTTE supporters and terrorists who make negative remark about Buddhist Sri Lanka.

    I Hussein Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:38 AM

    Colombo is one of the worse cities but there are cities even worse than Colombo. NO Chennai & Culcutta in the list.
    Canada and Australia dominating the top several. Zurich, Geneva, Bern, Copenhagen, Munich, Olso not even mentioned.
    No big deal just ignore.

    demon Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:45 AM

    he stands somewhere in colombo...

    demon Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:49 AM

    ha ha long did he last? think ...

    Sunil Lanka Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:45 AM

    Worse is yet to come, because we are still on our way to SUBA ANAGATHE

    rupasensa Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:56 AM

    HA HA HA

    Apsara Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:58 AM

    Similarly an evaluation shall be carried out among political leaders with respect to their honesty and leadership.


    titanic Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:59 AM

    chintha i agree with u. india is not a good friend of us. our politicians didnt know how did they train ltte fight against our country,now we are not in a position to open our mouth.

    punchi Tuesday, 22 February 2011 06:03 AM

    Is "seated" rather than standing. If he was standing we may have not been ranked sooo well

    rohan Tuesday, 22 February 2011 05:59 AM

    Miracle of asia....Hik....hik....hik...hik....

    Wara Tuesday, 22 February 2011 06:09 AM

    That is true. See the highest ranked cities. If now Colombo at 10the worst city. 10 years back where could be ?? Now colombo is becoming somewhat better city.

    Wara Tuesday, 22 February 2011 06:10 AM

    Well said Samarasinghe.

    ramesh Tuesday, 22 February 2011 06:17 AM

    UNP must be behind this !!!

    Wara Tuesday, 22 February 2011 06:18 AM

    Yes, Now it's better than UNP era and now its under the development of UDA . Remember Colombo city is always ruled by UNP !!!!

    Guru Tuesday, 22 February 2011 06:18 AM

    That's the truth

    citizen1 Tuesday, 22 February 2011 06:12 AM

    Wow! Atleast we beat Tehran and Kharachi! Congrats Colombo! hehe

    Wara Tuesday, 22 February 2011 06:20 AM

    Yes, where is Tokyo, Singapore ??

    Calvin Tuesday, 22 February 2011 06:20 AM

    Take this as an eye opener.. Dont bring sarcasm and politics to this. If you are a true Sri Lankan, they who must sadden from the article. Not enjoyed.

    Wara Tuesday, 22 February 2011 06:21 AM

    Why Mahinda chinthane ?? Colombo MC is ruled by UNP for dacades !!

    Nina Kamal Tuesday, 22 February 2011 06:24 AM

    This is the next headline... you said it before....... good job!

    Wara Tuesday, 22 February 2011 06:24 AM

    Where is Bagdad, in Iraq. Everyday bomb blasts but still better than Colombo. What a funny survey !!!

    Darren Tuesday, 22 February 2011 06:38 AM

    was Colombo built after 2005?who permitted all those Illegal constructions????

    NJ Tuesday, 22 February 2011 06:40 AM

    This is a pretty ridiculous survey. Working for a European company I can understand how they would have done the survey. Basically research and spend more time on the so-called important cities and then just fill up the gaps, put in fake stats and dump the un-important cities towards the end of the list. It is also very subjective and probably geared to western needs. Such as freedom to commit homosexuality!

    Ive traveled to over 30 Countries in the last 3 years and can tell you Colombo is pretty good compared to many cities, specially the filthy Indian ones!! That doesnt mean we stop transforming the city to a super city and working hard for its development now!!

    lankaputha Tuesday, 22 February 2011 06:40 AM

    only the best 140 cities are considered. If not the list will be something like Chennai listed as 3433 out of 3500 cities in he world

    noah Tuesday, 22 February 2011 06:41 AM

    Have u been to an indian city.?. i have read that colombo is da best city in south asia.. so where are those cities?

    tma Tuesday, 22 February 2011 06:53 AM

    Nothing new as Colombo has become a concrete jungle due to bad planning.

    ilu Tuesday, 22 February 2011 07:03 AM

    hoda wade

    don Tuesday, 22 February 2011 07:02 AM

    is the focus towards Hambanthota?

    Wara Tuesday, 22 February 2011 07:04 AM

    Good comment.

    Banda Tuesday, 22 February 2011 07:18 AM

    Stability, Health care, Culture & Environment, Education and Infrastructure- We got them all! This is another conspiracy by the colonials- Just ask the bus boy Wimal.

    vasantha rajapaksha Tuesday, 22 February 2011 07:47 AM

    this is the worst place on this planet !

    TMA Tuesday, 22 February 2011 07:42 AM

    Only an area of Indian cities R in bad condition. Some areas R very sophisticated. But here everyplace is in bad condition, where a 15 min. rain can flood the whole city

    Ajith Cabral Tuesday, 22 February 2011 07:47 AM

    Ethakota ape Hambanthota rank kare nadda ?

    tapz Tuesday, 22 February 2011 07:57 AM

    TRAITOR !!!

    cracko Tuesday, 22 February 2011 08:03 AM

    Sri Lanka Amazing! Never admit. Always blame foreign conspiracy.

    Fayad Tuesday, 22 February 2011 08:06 AM

    If Colombo is among the worst city's where do Dhaka, Chennai, Mumbai, Rawalpindi stands.

    mayu Tuesday, 22 February 2011 08:20 AM

    dude have u been to Chennai?? u knw their road networks and infrastructure?? have you seen their fly overs??
    we are no where closer to them. Its shame but have to accept the reality.

    TDDC Tuesday, 22 February 2011 08:20 AM

    Is their any decent toilet in the Town?

    kowsikan Tuesday, 22 February 2011 08:36 AM

    oh my god!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    kowsikan Tuesday, 22 February 2011 08:38 AM

    oh my god.

    Dilshan S. Tuesday, 22 February 2011 08:55 AM

    Finally, we were credited. Suba anagathayak.

    nissanka Tuesday, 22 February 2011 09:05 AM




    Ane Manda Tuesday, 22 February 2011 09:11 AM

    Labai, Labai, Idam labai, Kolamba meda.. enne.. enne..
    Akkarayak rupiyal dahayai...

    Mana Tuesday, 22 February 2011 10:47 AM

    It nicely demonstrates how Sri Lanka would be the Wonder Of Asia!!!!!!!!

    FDO Tuesday, 22 February 2011 12:11 PM

    this is why some people say "suba anagathayak"....

    FDO Tuesday, 22 February 2011 12:28 PM

    not Wonder Of Asia................. MIRACLE OF ASIA so dey say i realy dont know how it could have......... it can b but since we have a brilliant government......... i dont know.......... SAD

    Kadira Tuesday, 22 February 2011 12:34 PM

    Why is everyone complaining, I thought everyone wanted cheap food not infrastructure development etc.?

    Moda Johny Tuesday, 22 February 2011 12:50 PM

    what has standerd f living got do with buddist? why can't you guys get out of this racial thinking and do somthing good? the last time we spoke like this, we had a war for 30 odd years

    Sadarana Tuesday, 22 February 2011 12:54 PM

    We should be happy at least we became 131 in this list ...because there were thousands of cities which did not get listed in this.,,,...Being a small country we were able to get listed in such a survey, google this research and see you would find out so many big cities not there

    hemantha Tuesday, 22 February 2011 12:48 PM

    May be a report without visiting Colombo in this century

    James Ratnam Smith Tuesday, 22 February 2011 01:27 PM

    Colombo is the Eighth Wonders of the World

    Minister Tuesday, 22 February 2011 01:21 PM

    How appropriate the title "ASIA'S MIRACLE" for us is!

    j Tuesday, 22 February 2011 02:38 PM

    some countries are not even listed... so we are good we are atleast among the best 100 cities

    Brenan Wednesday, 23 February 2011 03:08 AM

    Totally agree the part india wants to show sri lanka is worst than them...

    Tilan Wednesday, 23 February 2011 06:35 AM

    This is a conspiracy of Ranil / Sajith and UNP.

    I am sure the government will use the above slogan during the elections.

    ha ha ha....what a country we live in.

    Tilan Wednesday, 23 February 2011 06:36 AM

    They can not visit Colombo...The government will not give VISA or will turn then off once they arrive at the airport.

    adrian Wednesday, 23 February 2011 06:44 AM

    Maybe the world Cup eye wash of the place might improve our rating somewhat!!

    Neil Wednesday, 23 February 2011 06:45 AM

    Prime Minister of Singapore in mid sixties once said that they should develop Singapore like Colombo. Look where we are now, thanks for our honest politicians.

    Colombo Wednesday, 23 February 2011 06:59 AM

    they have taken so many fact to rate this.. one of them is quality of people.. so stop complaining and fix our self first.. until the rules brought up we all happily dump garbage bags all over roads.

    Roshantha Wednesday, 23 February 2011 07:38 AM

    The government should be congratulated and recognised for this great achievement... Well done!!!

    The Liberal Wednesday, 23 February 2011 07:42 AM

    True it's better than cities in Sub-Saharan Africa and most of South-Asia, but not all of Colombo is Barnes Place. There are slums and appalling living conditions. Then there is the flooding issue. These things should be rectified first before selling acres upon acres to the Chinese to build luxury hotels.

    And while i don't think we should be in the bottom ten, we ain't in the top ten either!

    Henry Wednesday, 23 February 2011 07:48 AM

    Now our politikka's will say "At least we are in the top ten" (Although its from the bottom) , useless politicians please open your eyes and see the disaster you have done to this country !

    Wimal Wednesday, 23 February 2011 07:49 AM

    This is a foreign conspiracy. Colombo is the best city in the world

    SHIYAM Wednesday, 23 February 2011 08:09 AM

    Asiyawe Ashcharyata Jayawewa

    CarefulReader Wednesday, 23 February 2011 08:39 AM

    The report was based on data collected upto 2008 December.

    Sumie Wednesday, 23 February 2011 09:11 AM

    hik hik.. wimal weerawansa? hik

    Bird Eye Wednesday, 23 February 2011 01:50 PM

    Consider the cost of living and job opertunities. The gap is sky high. How about the politicos convoy driveing on our roads. Sri Lanka sucks money.

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