Saturday , May 25 2024

CANZUK on the international stage

The CANZUK nations dominate the international rankings for democracy, corruption and education and lead the way for a brighter and better future

The CANZUK nations are well-known for their great vibrant economies and high living standards. However, the CANZUK nations are also highly regarded in other ways too. Our four great countries lead the way when it comes to education, democracy and low levels of corruption. The CANZUK movement can become a real force for global peace and stability that can create a platform for other countries to emulate.

According to the Economist Democracy index of 2018, only twenty countries in the world are considered “full democracies”. The four CANZUK nations are all included and dominate the top tier of this table. New Zealand, Canada, and Australia are within the top ten most democratic nations on earth, and the UK is the 14th.  Even the great democratic nations such as the United States, France, Italy, and the EU principal capital Belgium, are not considered to be fully functioning democracies but fall into a separate category named “flawed democracies”.

You can view the top 20 nations listed in the Democracy Index here: Democracy Index 2018.

Why do the CANZUK countries dominate the Democracy Index?

The common law (often called English law) is the basis of the legal framework for the CANZUK countries. Along with the parliamentary system, the CANZUK countries share four similar principles: representation, fair justice, individual freedoms and property rights. The legacy of the former British Empire and Commonwealth has created a unique system of governance that allows for many English speaking peoples to enjoy such freedoms. The former British territories of Ireland and Malta follow the common law system too and are ranked within the world 20 most democratic nations.


According to the Corruption Perception index, by Transparency International, the CANZUK countries are considered to be the most corruption-free nations on earth. According to the data, New Zealand is believed to be the second most corruption-free nation, with Denmark just edging the first spot.  All four CANZUK nations are amongst the 15th least corrupt nations in the world. The low level of corruption allows the CANZUK nations to offer fantastic opportunities for reasonable political discourse and fair business practices. With relatively low levels of corruption, many people consider the CANZUK nations to be the bastions of freedom; that embraces innovation, hard work and creativity.

The 2018 CPI draws on 13 surveys and expert assessments to measure public sector corruption in 180 countries and territories, giving each a score from zero (highly corrupt) to 100 (very clean).


According to the OCED, the citizens of the CANZUK countries are amongst the most educated people in the world, containing the most excellent education facilities and long-standing institutions that have enabled the CANZUK countries to have a large number of educated citizens. Canadians are considered to be the most knowledgeable people in the world, followed by the UK in 6th and Australia in 8th.  The OECD defined a country’s adult education level as the percentage of people between the ages of 25 and 64 who have completed some kind of tertiary education in the form of a two-year degree, four-year degree, or vocational program.

According to a study by the QS Best Student Cities index, the CANZUK countries contain the best urban destinations for international students; with London ranked 1st, Melbourne 3rd and Montreal 4th. Out of the top twenty global cities for students, ten are within the four CANZUK nations. Students are attracted to the CANZUK cities because of their diverse range of universities, education quality, and affordability and importantly because of the English language and job prospects. The English language is considered by many to be the language of business, commerce and education.

You can view a listing of CANZUK cities in the best student cities index here: CANZUK Best Student Cities.

Data was gathered from QS Best Student Cities Index

The CANZUK countries are united by a shared common culture and historical ties. The Anglosphere has long been a place for strength, peace, innovation, education and democracy. Brexit has granted us the chance to re-write the historical wrong, which allowed our nations to drift.  The time has come to formalise the alliance of the CANZUK nations and maintain those close cultural, political, educational and military cooperation that is the envy of the world. The relations between our countries must develop and strength to further the cause of all our peoples. We should value the strength and integrity of our shared political system and remember that to be born in a CANZUK nation is to win the lottery of life.


Economist, Democracy Index

Corruption Index

QS Best Student Cities Index


OECD (2019), Adult education level (indicator). doi: 10.1787/36bce3fe-en (Accessed on 13 February 2019)



About Ted Yarbrough

Ted is the co-founder and editor of the Daily Globe. He is a long-time blogger on British politics and has written a thesis on Thatcherism.

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One comment

  1. A timely reminder of who should be our friends and allies.