Abu Dhabi and Dubai remain the most liveable cities in the Middle East and Africa, thanks to a massive vaccination drive against the Covid-19 pandemic that made them two of the safest cities in the region and the first to recover from the pandemic, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).
The vaccination campaign helped the country “avoid full-scale lock-downs in 2021 and, so far, in 2022,” EIU said.
“Abu Dhabi and Dubai have largely remained open for business since the first wave in 2020. Their relatively quick recovery is one reason why the cities rank first and second respectively,” it said in its latest report.
In June, the UAE completed vaccinating all target groups against Covid-19.
Dubai was among the first major cities globally to reopen after the pandemic. The strict policies implemented by the authorities helped contain the pandemic and reopen the city earlier for businesses.
As a result of strong trust in the two emirates, Dubai Airport received 7.12 million passengers while Abu Dhabi Airports’ passenger traffic surpassed 6.3 million during the January-June period. Dubai’s population also crossed the 3.5 million mark for the first time earlier this year.
After the two emirates, Tel Aviv, Kuwait City and Bahrain were ranked among the top cities to live in in the region. The least liveable cities are Damascus, Lagos, Tripoli, Algiers and Harare.
On average, cities in the Middle East and North Africa received a score of 58, compared with 50 for those in sub-Saharan Africa, the world’s least liveable region.