Where are the safest destinations for contractors?

safest destinations for contractors

9th September 2019

With the world more interconnected than ever, contractors are spoilt for choice when it comes to choosing where to work. Therefore, it’s helpful when information comes out that may narrow this choice down. This is why we’ve covered a number of recent lists and surveys to this effect.

The latest study to do this is the Safe Cities Index 2019, produced by The Economist Intelligence Unit, which looks at everything from crime rates and road safety to digital security and quality of healthcare to determine the safest cities in the world. Here’s our take on the top five safest destinations for contractors:

The five safest destinations for contractors – Tokyo

Tokyo, otherwise known as Akihabara, or ‘The Electric Town’, once again held onto the top spot as the safest destinations for contractors, securing its place for the third year running with an overall score of 92. Of the four main categories in the survey, the city came first for digital security, second for health security, and fourth for both personal and infrastructure security.  The city was also voted the best in Asia in the recent Time Out Index survey. Respondents in the report praised the city’s safe and clean environment and great dining scene.

Furthermore, due to an ageing population and a low birth-rate, the country is battling the tightest labour shortage in decades. This has led Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to approve legislation that will open the door to as many as half a million foreign workers by 2025, in what some are calling the end to Japan’s traditional opposition to large-scale immigration.


The second safest destination for contractors was Singapore. A major player in the APAC region, the country has a reputation as one of the strongest economies in the world.  It’s also hugely attractive for contractors, with high demand for professionals across a number of sectors. Recent reports, for example, have highlighted skills shortages in the country’s lucrative Fintech industry, with demand for skills in AI, machine learning, data science, UI/UX, and digital transformation.


Osaka, a hotspot for foodies, has secured third place again. As a port city, it has long been a key commercial centre. Contractors with fluent English will find their language skills in demand by the many international companies in the locality, with particular opportunities in electronics, trade and manufacturing.

If contractors get any spare time, we recommend visiting the stunning 16th-century Osaka Castle, one of Japan’s most famous landmarks. It played a major role in the unification of Japan during the Azuchi-Momoyama period.


Amsterdam is one of only two European cities to make the top 10 safest destinations for contractors, rising from sixth in 2017 to fourth this year.  The destination is one of the most connected cities in the EU, serving as home to the Amsterdam Internet Exchange (AMS-IX), one of the largest internet exchanges in the world with more than 800 members.

The city is also a magnet for tech talent. There is a pool of over 250k tech workers in the destination. With an urban population of one million people, that means that around 25% of its population works in tech.

Furthermore, with government programmes such as the Highly Skilled Migrant Visa programme further simplifying the process of bringing in talent, it’s unsurprising the city is so attractive to contractors.


Home to the Opera House, Harbour Bridge and Royal Botanical Gardens, Sydney is a renowned city world-wide for not only its cultural heritage, but also its economic value. When it comes to job vacancies, a new commercial development to revolutionise Liverpool city centre, in the South West of Sydney, will create more than 22,000 jobs.

Australia itself is also facing widespread skills shortages in the country with a shortfall of 739,000 highly skilled workers, with much of this demand noted in Sydney. Therefore, demand for contractors in the destination looks set to continue.


While these five places have been cited as the safest destinations for contractors to work, wherever you choose to go, without paying careful attention to tax and compliance in the country, this safety may be short lived.

With the global push towards more comprehensive tax systems, it’s vital that individuals ensure that they are compliant with legislation in their chosen destination, or risk landing themselves in serious trouble. For peace of mind when pursuing overseas opportunities, we strongly recommend partnering with a global expert.

Contact our specialist team today:


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