These are the world’s most competitive economies

tankers UN NewsThis article is brought to you thanks to the strategic cooperation of The European Sting with the World Economic Forum.

Author: Kate Whiting, Senior Writer, Formative Content

How well countries adapt to the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) will determine whether they ‘thrive’ or ‘stagnate’ and could further divide workforces and increase social tensions, according to the latest version of the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report.

Almost 40 years after its first annual assessment of the global economy, the Forum’s 2018 report uses new methodology to understand the full impact of the 4IR, and finds factors including human capital, agility, resilience, openness and innovation becoming increasingly important.

The new index measures 140 economies against 98 indicators, organized into 12 ‘pillars’ or drivers of productivity, to determine how close the economy is to the ideal state or ‘frontier’ of competitiveness.

The US topped the rankings, being ‘closest to the competitiveness frontier’, with Singapore, Germany, Switzerland and Japan, completing the top five. At the other end of the scale, Haiti, Yemen and Chad were found to be the least competitive economies.

Competitiveness is not only associated with higher incomes, but also better socioeconomic outcomes, including life satisfaction.

Explaining the new approach to measuring competitiveness, Thierry Geiger, Head, Research and Regional Impact, Future of Economic Progress at the World Economic Forum, said: “Productivity is the single most important driver of growth in 2018. With the Fourth Industrial Revolution in full swing, there is a need to rethink the drivers of competitiveness and therefore of long-term growth.

“Those new drivers include adaptability and agility of all stakeholders, including the governments. To what extent are they able to embrace change and adapt to change and upgrade their economies?”

Top of the index

The US scored 85.6 out of 100 to top the index, coming in the top three for seven of the 12 pillars. Its entrepreneurial culture saw it score highly in the business dynamism pillar. It also scored highly for its labour market and financial system.

But there were several areas which showed it still has more to do. It notably drops behind other advanced economies in the health pillar, with a life expectancy of 67.7 years, putting it in 46th place. And it was far from the frontier for checks and balances (40th place), judicial independence (15th) and corruption (16th).

The top 11 countries all score above 80 points for competitiveness. Second-placed Singapore (83.5) is defined by its high score for openness and it leads the way for infrastructure, with a near-perfect score of 95.7 for its world-beating transport system.

Germany, in third place, is the highest placed European economy for competitiveness, with particular strength in innovation capability (first place, with 88), business dynamism (82, second behind the US) and health (94).

Room for improvement

One of the key findings from the report is that all economies could do better in certain areas. For example, while Singapore might be the most ‘future-ready’ economy, Finland outdoes it for having a digitally skilled workforce.

And while low and and middle-income economies can leverage technology to jumpstart growth, the report emphasises the importance of ‘old’ developmental pillars, such as governance, infrastructure and skills.

Worryingly, of the 140 economies surveyed, 117 still lagged behind for quality of institutions, which impacted their overall competitiveness.

There was also widespread weakness at mastering the innovation process, with 103 countries scoring lower than 50 when it comes to following through from idea generation to commercial product.

A key message of the Global Competitive Index 4.0 is that there are no winners and losers – but rather, in the face of new technological challenges, countries can learn from each other.

“Competitiveness is neither a competition nor a zero-sum game – all countries can become more prosperous,” said Saadia Zahihi, Member of the Managing Board and Head of the Centre for New Economy and Society.

“With opportunities for economic leapfrogging, diffusion of innovative ideas across borders and new forms of value creation, the Fourth Industrial Revolution can level the playing field for all economies. But technology is not a silver bullet on its own. Countries must invest in people and institutions to deliver on the promise of technology.”

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

the European Sting Milestones

Featured Stings

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

Juncker Investment Plan for Europe welcomed by European Youth Forum

Why will Paris upcoming “loose” climate change agreement work better than the previous ones?

What will it take for the world’s third-largest economy to empower women?

ECB asks for more subsidies to banks

Economic growth ‘exceeds expectations’ but trade tensions are rising: UN report

Europe should make voice ‘more heard’ in today’s ‘dangerous world,’ says UN chief

The EU banking union needs a third pillar guaranteeing deposits

Women’s leadership ‘critical’ to future of Niger

Portugal: €4.66 million in aid for 1,460 dismissed workers and jobless young

Fair completion rules and the law of gravity don’t apply to banks

Action needed to tackle stalled social mobility

European Business Summit 2014: Sting Report, Day I

World Cancer Day: Early cervical cancer diagnosis could save lives of over 300,000 women

IMF – World Bank meetings: US – Germany clash instituted, anti-globalization prospects visualized

Cultural Intelligence: the importance of changing perspectives

Free trade agreement between EU and India?

Brexit kick-off: a historic day for the EU anticlockwise

International tourism arrivals hit record high in 2017, UN agency reports

The European brain drain and the deteriorating medical workforce

New migration pact highlights key role of business in protecting migrants, say UN experts

Mali: ‘Dire’ humanitarian situation, ‘grave’ security concerns challenge fragile peace

Challenges remain in DPRK despite ‘slight’ improvements in health, wellbeing: UNICEF

These countries are pioneering hydrogen power

On flight to sustainable development, ‘leave no country behind’, urges aviation agency

Could robot leaders do better than our current politicians?

Guinea-Bissau: Upcoming elections vital to prevent ‘relapse’ into instability, says UN envoy

Humanitarian aid convoy to Syria’s Rukban camp: Mission Accomplished

Why sustainable packaging is good for profits as well as the planet

Court of Auditors: EU spending infested with errors well above the materiality threshold of 2%

G20 LIVE: the EU trade gold rush continues as EU and Australia agree to launch Free Trade Agreement (FTA) live from Antalya Turkey

Security Union: political agreement on strengthened Schengen Information System

New EU rules to thwart money laundering and terrorist financing

The “Legend of the Sun” wishes you Happy Chinese New Year 2015 from Brussels

Here’s what happened when one Guatemalan town went to war on plastic waste

EU-Turkey relations: Will Turkey manage to revive the EU accession process talks?

Texting is a daily source of stress for 1/3 of people – are you one of them?

How leaders can use ‘agile governance’ to drive tech and win trust

The new EU “fiscal compact” an intimidation for all people

New UN rights chief pledges to push back on ‘centuries of prejudice and discrimination’

Can Greece’s devastating economy deal with the migration crisis?

MWC 2016 LIVE: Getty chief says one in four new images from phones

A Sting Exclusive: “On the road to Japan-EU Economic Partnership Agreement”, by Ambassador Katakami of the Japanese Mission to the European Union

Health is nothing but the main consequence of climate change

Draghi to lay his print on long term ECB policies prior to exiting next year

The fatal consequences of troika’s blind austerity policy

Greece to stay in the euro area but the cost to its people remains elusive

Human rights chief calls for international probe on Venezuela, following ‘shocking accounts of extrajudicial killings’

Can Obama attract Iran close to the US sphere of influence?

UN chief seeking ‘renewed commitment’ to global rules and values, as world leaders head to New York

Member States and Commission to work together to boost artificial intelligence “made in Europe”

EU leaders let tax-evaders untouched

Greece’s last Eurogroup or the beginning of a new solid European Union?

EU Commission challenges Berlin by proposing breakthrough legislation on banks

“Working together to make a change at the COP 21 in Paris”, an article by Ambassador Yang of the Chinese Mission to EU

“As long as we work together through thick and thin, more benefits can be delivered to the people of Eurasia”, China’s Premier Li Keqiang highlights from ASEM in Brussels

Trump enrages the Europeans and isolates the US in G7

Stricter rules to stop terrorists from using homemade explosives

UN agency chiefs issue ‘call to action’ on behalf of refugee children

Local innovation, international impact: SMEs and the ITU Telecom World Awards

May led Britain to chaos, now looks for way out with unpredictable DUP

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s