The Netherlands has climbed back from eighth to fifth place in the latest edition of the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report.
Global Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed said this was the country’s highest ranking since 2005, proving the effectiveness of the Government Transformation Programme and the Economic Transformation Programme.
South Africa’s biggest improvements come in the areas of: infrastructure (up eight places), health and primary education (up six places), labour market efficiency (up six places), technological readiness (up 16 places), and innovation (upf ive places).
Major strengths that helped keep the US competitive included its cutting-edge business sector, substantial market size and innovation, WEF said.
“Growth is expected to remain below the levels recorded in previous decades in most developed economies and in many emerging markets”, said the report.
“Switzerland must continue to sharpen its competitive edge to justify the high cost of doing business in the country”, the report added. Under this criterion, deflation and high inflation are considered equally detrimental for the economy, so countries undergoing deflation were ranked much lower than Serbia.
The WEF, best known for its annual conference in Davos, defines competitiveness as the set of institutions, policies and factors that determine a country’s level of productivity.
Whereas China secured with same position as 28.
“Bulgaria is now going through an “Efficiency Driven” stage of development, out of three (the other two are “Factor Driven” and Innovation Driven”) stages, the Competitiveness_Report_2015-2016.pdf” document [PDF] reads.
Ghana’s worst performance among the above 12 pillars, was its rating for macroeconomic environment: 2.79 over 7, placing it in the 136th position for macroeconomic environment.
This year’s Global Competitiveness Index finds a close link between competitiveness and an economy’s ability to nurture, attract, leverage and support talent.
Meanwhile, among the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) countries, India led the way at 55th, followed by Sri Lanka (68th, up five).
The failure, particularly by emerging markets, to improve competitiveness since the recession suggests future shocks to the global economy could have deep and protracted consequences.