New Zealand has been rated the least dangerous place to live for women in Asia Pacific.
According to a new study done by ValueChampion, a financial analytics company, New Zealand and Singapore topped the list for the safest cities for women.
The study analysed 14 countries in Asia Pacific based on safety, healthcare and opportunities for women.
Both score consistently well on major global indices such as the 2018 Global Peace Index and 2018 Human Development Index, indicating that they have low levels of internal and international conflicts, suffer minor gender inequality and see positive developmental and opportunity growth potential.
Crime rates are low and there are laws against marital rape, domestic assault and sexual harassment.
Both countries also have impressive health indicators, such as, life expectancy rates that are about 11-12 years above the global average and infant and maternal mortality rates are significantly below average.
These measures indicate women have access to high quality healthcare, adequate pre-natal and post-natal medical care and proper nutrition and sanitation.
Women also have access to contraception, sexual education and family planning — meaning, in most cases, they would not be penalised for leading a sexually active lifestyle.
Lastly, women also have equal-opportunity protections, with high levels of education, literacy and employment, indicating that they are less restricted in terms of economic mobility.
However, the study pointed out that there is still room for improvement.
While New Zealand has strict laws against marital rape, sexual harassment and domestic violence, its female murder rate is almost three times that of Singapore's.
This can be attributed to the high Māori mortality rate, so, while New Zealand tops the list, Māori women may face a heightened risk of danger.
The study also said while abortion is allowed under certain circumstances in New Zealand, the lack of abortion rights for rape victims is in stark contrast to many other developed countries.
Australia was third on the list due to its lack of crime, availability of healthcare and access to education, employment opportunities and legal recourse.
Australia's room for improvement stems from its reproductive rights laws, which range from restrictive to open.
Because these laws are managed by the territories rather than by the country as a whole, certain areas of Australia may be better for women looking for full reproductive and family planning rights than others.
The study said there is also still an ongoing problem with rape and domestic violence against women in indigenous communities, drawing a similarity to New Zealand.
The Philippines, Indonesia and India were found to be the most dangerous destinations for women.
All of these countries were found to have subpar access to healthcare, lax laws regarding women's safety, poor access to family planning resources and overall inequality.
Despite government interventions and attempts to enact laws that protect women's safety, deeply entrenched patriarchal attitudes either due to cultural or religious beliefs led to women fearing for their wellbeing more often than in other countries on the list.
Despite Indian authorities trying to provide legal recourse for rape victims, funding was inadequate, cases weren't resolved properly and despite honor killing participants facing the death penalty, honor killings were still reported, the study said.
In Indonesia, despite laws prohibiting rape, domestic abuse and other forms of violence, a 2016 government survey found that around 33 per cent of women between 15 and 64 experienced some form of violence.
Safest countries in Asia Pacific for women:
• 1st Equal - Singapore
• 1st Equal - New Zealand
• 3rd - Australia
• 4th - Japan
• 5th - Taiwan
• 6th - Hong Kong
• 7th - South Korea
• 8th - Vietnam
• 9th - Thailand
• 10th - Malaysia
• 11th - China
• 12th - Philippines
• 13th - Indonesia
• 14th - India