WEF's global economy competitiveness report: Roberto Crotti

America first

The Netherlands has slipped out of the top five in the latest edition of the World Economic Forum's ranking of the world's most competitive economies. The U.S. scored at the top of three of the 12 pillars, including business dynamism (basically, entrepreneurialism), labor markets, and financial system. The 2018 WEF's GCI rankings moved Nigeria up 10 places, having being ranked 125th out of 137 countries raked in 2017.

Global Competitiveness Index 4.0 is a measure of national competitiveness and it is defined as the set of institutions, factors and policies that determine the productivity level of a nation. It also pointed out that the United States is far behind most advanced economies in health, with life expectancy six years behind competitors Singapore and Japan. Switzerland is ranked first in terms of the ability to reskill and retrain its workforce, while Germany is supposedly the best when it comes to mastering the innovation process in business. Germany was third, notable for its macroeconomic stability. "Countries must invest in people and institutions to deliver on the promise of technology".

WEF founder Klaus Schwab cited understanding and openness to new technologies as fundamental to a country's competitiveness.

"With this report, the World Economic Forum proposes an approach to assess how well countries are performing against this new criterion".

However, New Zealand struggled when it came to innovation capability, ranking 27th on a global level.

A new methodology, covering 98 indicators from infrastructure to innovation, was introduced to shed light on the effect on productivity of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, which is characterised by a range of new technologies impacting disciplines, economies and industries. The presidency of Donald Trump in the United States, as well as the UK's vote to leave the European Union, has threatened to drastically alter the status quo in global trade in recent years. The report stated that Singapore's performance was excellent in the areas of infrastructure and product market, which city-state topped globally. The 98 indicators in the index this year were drawn from global organizations and a survey of company executives; it largely reflected long-term policies such as investing in digital skills.



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