New Global Competitiveness Report Released

Reply Thu 29 Sep, 2005 12:51 am

Nordic countries and East Asian tigers top the rankings in the World Economic Forum's 2005 competitiveness rankings

Australia, India, Ireland and Poland all gain positions - US remains in second place after Finland

28 September 2005 - Geneva, Switzerland

Finland remains the most competitive economy in the world and tops the rankings for the third consecutive year in The Global Competitiveness Report 2005-2006, released today by the World Economic Forum. The United States is in second position, followed by Sweden, Denmark, Taiwan and Singapore, respectively.

The rankings are drawn from a combination of hard data, publicly available for each of the economies studied, and the results of the Executive Opinion Survey, a comprehensive assessment conducted by the World Economic Forum, together with its network of partner institutes (leading research institutes and business organizations) in the countries covered by the Report. This year nearly 11,000 business leaders were polled in a record 117 economies worldwide. The survey questionnaire is designed to capture a broad range of factors affecting an economy's business environment that are key determinants of sustained economic growth. Particular attention is placed on elements of the macroeconomic environment, the quality of public institutions which underpin the development process, and the level of technological readiness and innovation.

"The Nordic countries share a number of characteristics that make them extremely competitive, such as very healthy macroeconomic environments and public institutions that are highly transparent and efficient, with general agreement within society on the spending priorities to be met in the government budget. While the business communities in the Nordic countries point to high tax rates as a potential problem area, there is no evidence that these are adversely affecting the ability of these countries to compete effectively in world markets, or to provide to their respective populations some of the highest standards of living in the world. Indeed, the high levels of government tax revenue have delivered world-class educational establishments, an extensive safety net, and a highly motivated and skilled labour force," said Augusto Lopez-Claros, Chief Economist and Director of the World Economic Forum's Global Competitiveness Programme.

The World Economic Forum has been producing The Global Competitiveness Report for 26 years, and its unique mix of hard and soft data has made it possible to accurately capture the broad range of factors seen to be essential to a better understanding of the determinants of growth. Each year it has delivered a comprehensive overview of the main strengths and weaknesses in a large number of countries, making it possible to identify key areas for reform and policy formulation.
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Walter Hinteler
Reply Thu 29 Sep, 2005 12:52 am
This annual study is a valuable tool for shaping economic policy and guiding investment decisions. It is one of the leading monitors of the competitive condition of economies worldwide. Produced in collaboration with leading academics and a global network of 122 Partner Institutes, The Global Competitiveness Report has expanded its geographic coverage over the years and now assesses 117 economies. The report is unique in that the methodology combines publicly available data with survey data that captures the perceptions and observations of business leaders in a given country.

Country Rankings 2005-2006

1. Finland
2. USA
3. Sweden
4. Denmark
5. Taiwan
6. Singapore
7. Iceland
8. Switzerland
13.United Kingdom
16. New Zealand

Full rankings

by Professor Klaus Schwab

The publication of this year's Global Competitiveness Report provides an opportunity to examine some of the key economic issues confronting the international community.

The global economy is expected to grow by some 4.25 percent in 2005, nearly one percentage point less than in 2004, when the rapid expansion of global trade delivered the best growth performance for world output of the past decade. Notwithstanding a slowdown in industrial production and global trade, and the adverse impact of higher oil prices, the short-term outlook suggests solid growth, at least through the end of 2006.

The Global Competitiveness Report is a contribution to enhancing our understanding of the key ingredients of economic growth and prosperity. By highlighting the strengths and weaknesses of an economy, policymakers and business leaders are offered an important tool to assist them in the formulation of improved economic policies and institutional reforms.

World Economic Forum
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