Switzerland Is Where Life Expectancy at Birth Is the Longest

Switzerland Is Where Life Expectancy at Birth Is the Longest

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On average, Europeans live 80.9 years. But life expectancy ranges from 69 (Kosovo) to 83.3 years (Switzerland). There are wide gaps between countries and genders.

Life expectancy in Europe

The importance of life expectancy at birth is correlated to the GDP per capita. Switzerland boasts the highest life expectancy (83.3 years) and is the third European country (and fourth globally) in terms of GDP per capita ($81,276). Luxembourg and Norway have the highest GDP per capita globally: $112,473 and $100,579 respectively. These countries are also where life expectancy at birth is the longest: 82.3 for Luxembourg and 82.2 for Norway. Russia, whose life expectancy is rather short (69.8) also shows a GDP per capita that is low: $8,661. (2013 IMF data)

This indicator shows the economic growth of a given country, but not its development or the well-being or quality of life of the population. A country is considered « developed » when its GDP per capita exceeds $20,000, but Russia is actually a developed country in spite of its $8,661.

We can observe a real hiatus between Western and Eastern Europe. All countries east of Germany and Austria (except Greece and Cyprus) show a life expectancy at birth under 80 years. The border is similar to that of the Cold War with the Soviet countries.

Life expectancy at birth

There Are Significant Discrepancies Between Men and Women

Kosovo is the country where life expectancy at birth is the shortest for women (71 years) and France where it is the longest (86). For men, the shortest life expectancy at birth is in Russia (64.2) and the highest in Switzerland (81.1).

Russia is the country where the disparity between men and women is the most significant: 11.3 years. The reason for this is a cocktail of factors that create difficult life conditions: weather, safety on the workplace, alcohol abuse, lack of Social Security, violence, pollution, etc.

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