Singapore Trumps US In Competitiveness Ranking

Singapore’s iconic Merlion statue sprays water from its mouth into the Marina Bay at sunset. The Southeast Asian city-state has improved its IMD World Competitiveness ranking.

Singapore moved up a place to grab third spot in the latest IMD World Competitiveness Yearbook behind Hong Kong and Switzerland, pushing the US down to fourth, its lowest position in five years.

The Netherlands, meanwhile, jumped three places to join the top five in the annual rankings, which have been published every year since 1989 by the IMD World Competitiveness Center, a research group at IMD business school in Switzerland.

Rankings are based on 260 indicators, about two thirds of which come from ‘hard’ data such as national employment and trade statistics. The remaining third of indicators come from more than 6,250 responses to an Executive Opinion Survey that measures the business perception of issues, including corruption, environmental concerns and quality of life.

Indicators relating to government, business efficiency, and productivity are the ones that stood out among the most improved countries, according to IMD World Competitiveness Center director Professor Arturo Bris.

“These countries have maintained a business-friendly environment that encourages openness and productivity,” he said. “If you look at China, its improvement of seven places to 18th can be traced to its dedication to international trade. This continues to drive the economy and the improvement in government and business efficiency.”

Singapore topped the digital competitiveness ranking, followed by Sweden, the US, Finland and Denmark.

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