Mixed results for ASEAN in WEF report

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The Global Competitiveness Report 2012-2013, released by the World Economic Forum on September 5, shows Singapore maintaining its first rank among the most competitive ASEAN countries and its second rank globally behind Switzerland.

Malaysia follows second (on rank 25 globally), the same rank as in the previous report 2010-2011. Brunei came third (at rank 28 globally), also unchanged.

Thailand remains the fourth most competitive country in ASEAN, moving up one rank to 38th in the global ranking.  Indonesia slipped from rank 46 to 50 in the global list, while the Philippines improved significantly from rank 75 to 65. Vietnam dropped from rank 65 to 75.

Cambodia made it from rank 97 to 85 in this year’s ranking. Laos and Myanmar are not covered by the ranking, which contains 144 countries with Burundi last on the list.

Other highly competitive countries or regions in East Asia, such as Japan, Taiwan, South Korea and Hong Kong, maintained their good positions among the top 20 on the list.

BRIC countries under pressure

Most significantly, both China and India slipped in the WEF report. China’s global competitiveness ranking declined from 26 to 29 for the first time in 2012 after seven years of steady progress. India droped three ranks from 56 to 59. Once ahead of Brazil and South Africa, India now trails them by 10 ranks, and is lagging behind China by 30. Among the BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China), only Brazil improved.

The lower ranking for China this year is largely the result of its economic slowdown since late 2011. In India, lack of basic infrastructure was the “single biggest hindrance to doing business, well ahead of corruption and bureaucracy,” the report said.

GCC competitivness improving

Among the six Gulf Cooperation Council countries, Qatar ranks first and also made a leap from rank 14 to 11 globally. It is followed by Saudi Arabia (from 17 to 18), UAE (from 27 to 24), Oman (unchanged on rank 32) and Bahrain (from 37 to 35). The least competitive country in the GCC region on the WEF list is Kuwait, slipping from rank 34 to rank 37).

Qatar sustained the regional number one due to improvements in its macroecomomic environment, the efficiency of its markets for goods and services and its institutional framework, the report said. The UAE was lauded in the report for its labour market efficiency, and is also the only GCC country that made in on a separate global list of innovation-driven countries.

Southern Europe under pressure

Though northern European countries have consolidated their positions since the financial crisis of 2008, the survey found that those in southern Europe, such as Greece, Portugal, Spain and Italy, continue to suffer from a host of economic problems, including poor access to financing and rigid labour markets. Greece is faring worst of Europe’s problem economies and is ranked at 96, falling behind countries such as Namibia and Mongolia.

US dropping

Changes at the top of the ranking included the US dropping two places to 7 this year. The Netherlands and Germany have moved ahead of the US on the top 10 leaderboard.

 

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

Click to enlarge

The Global Competitiveness Report 2012-2013, released by the World Economic Forum on September 5, shows Singapore maintaining its first rank among the most competitive ASEAN countries and its second rank globally behind Switzerland.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Click to enlarge

The Global Competitiveness Report 2012-2013, released by the World Economic Forum on September 5, shows Singapore maintaining its first rank among the most competitive ASEAN countries and its second rank globally behind Switzerland.

Malaysia follows second (on rank 25 globally), the same rank as in the previous report 2010-2011. Brunei came third (at rank 28 globally), also unchanged.

Thailand remains the fourth most competitive country in ASEAN, moving up one rank to 38th in the global ranking.  Indonesia slipped from rank 46 to 50 in the global list, while the Philippines improved significantly from rank 75 to 65. Vietnam dropped from rank 65 to 75.

Cambodia made it from rank 97 to 85 in this year’s ranking. Laos and Myanmar are not covered by the ranking, which contains 144 countries with Burundi last on the list.

Other highly competitive countries or regions in East Asia, such as Japan, Taiwan, South Korea and Hong Kong, maintained their good positions among the top 20 on the list.

BRIC countries under pressure

Most significantly, both China and India slipped in the WEF report. China’s global competitiveness ranking declined from 26 to 29 for the first time in 2012 after seven years of steady progress. India droped three ranks from 56 to 59. Once ahead of Brazil and South Africa, India now trails them by 10 ranks, and is lagging behind China by 30. Among the BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China), only Brazil improved.

The lower ranking for China this year is largely the result of its economic slowdown since late 2011. In India, lack of basic infrastructure was the “single biggest hindrance to doing business, well ahead of corruption and bureaucracy,” the report said.

GCC competitivness improving

Among the six Gulf Cooperation Council countries, Qatar ranks first and also made a leap from rank 14 to 11 globally. It is followed by Saudi Arabia (from 17 to 18), UAE (from 27 to 24), Oman (unchanged on rank 32) and Bahrain (from 37 to 35). The least competitive country in the GCC region on the WEF list is Kuwait, slipping from rank 34 to rank 37).

Qatar sustained the regional number one due to improvements in its macroecomomic environment, the efficiency of its markets for goods and services and its institutional framework, the report said. The UAE was lauded in the report for its labour market efficiency, and is also the only GCC country that made in on a separate global list of innovation-driven countries.

Southern Europe under pressure

Though northern European countries have consolidated their positions since the financial crisis of 2008, the survey found that those in southern Europe, such as Greece, Portugal, Spain and Italy, continue to suffer from a host of economic problems, including poor access to financing and rigid labour markets. Greece is faring worst of Europe’s problem economies and is ranked at 96, falling behind countries such as Namibia and Mongolia.

US dropping

Changes at the top of the ranking included the US dropping two places to 7 this year. The Netherlands and Germany have moved ahead of the US on the top 10 leaderboard.

 

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