Estonia has been declared the best country for digital life by InterNations, a community platform that claims to be the largest global expat network.
“Being featured in the Expat Insider survey for the first time, Estonia comes in first place out of 68 countries in terms of digital life,” the recently published document by InterNations says. “The country is rated best in the world for both unrestricted access to online services (eg social media) and the availability of administrative or government services online.”
“In fact, 96% of expats judge the access to online services favourably (vs 80% globally), with 86% saying it could not be any better (vs 58% globally),” InterNations says. “Another 94% are impressed with the availability of administrative or government services online (vs 55% globally), with 70% giving it the best possible rating (vs 23% globally).”
Estonia also comes on top in the terms of the availability of government services online, thanks to its vast digital government system that includes ID-cards, online tax filing that takes only two minutes, and online voting. Estonia is fifth in the terms of paying with card (after Finland, Denmark, Sweden and Norway) and first in unrestricted access to online services.
In the overall top, Estonia is followed by Finland, Norway, Denmark and New Zealand. The US is listed 10th and the UK 15th. Russia is ranked 25th. The ranking doesn’t include Latvia or Lithuania.
Myanmar the worst country for digital life
At the other end of the scale, Myanmar, China, Egypt, India, and the Philippines are rated the worst countries for digital life. “Expats in these countries struggle with a lack of government services online, difficult access to high-speed internet at home, or even restrictions in their use of online services,” the research points out. “Interestingly, the worst-rated destination in the world, Myanmar, also holds a surprise: it ranks first for the ease of getting a local mobile phone number.”
The research is based on expat interviews. “To identify the best and worst countries for digital life, survey respondents were asked to rate their satisfaction with the following factors on a scale of one to seven: the unrestricted access to online services such as social media, the availability of government/administrative services online, the ease of getting a local mobile phone number, the ease of paying without cash, and the ease of getting access to high-speed internet at home.”
InterNations is a Munich, Germany-based expat network, founded in 2007 and, according to itself, has 3.5 million global members.
The cover image is illustrative.