Singapore Tops Competitive Economy Ranking – Jumping from Third Place Last Year to First
Singapore emerged top in the competitive economy ranking, two weeks after another report on quality of life showed that the country had improved its ranking.
Singapore has emerged as the world’s most competitive economy, jumping from third place last year to first. The Lion City last won the award in 2010. United States which was in first place last year, slipped to third.
The Swiss business school IMD which does the ranking, weighs in factors such as how far a country adopts an environment where enterprises can achieve sustainable growth, create jobs and look after the well-being of its citizens.
Factors That Contributed to Singapore’s Success
According to the report, factors such as progressive technological infrastructure, easy access of skilled labour, easy immigration laws on top of the well-planned structure to set up a new business here contributed to Singapore’s success.
The article featured quotes on how Singapore’s rise to the top place was credited to two lessons. The first one was that scale is not crucial because an agreement can be achieved easily with smaller economies and the second is that in the long run, good policies will be more successful.
On the other hand, kind tax and business policy environment and access to business finance supported Hong Kong to hold on to second place while early boost to confidence from President Donald Trump’s first wave of tax policies appears to have faded for the US.
Eventhough Washington is the standard for stages of infrastructure and economic performance, increased fuel price, low high-tech exports and instabilities in the value of the dollar has affected the competitiveness of the world’s biggest economy.
Moving forward, the report showed that Singapore must deepen its ability to help firms move up, provide workers with the skills to prosper in a knowledge-intensive environment and foster healthier local and international partnerships to penetrate new markets.
IMD World Competitiveness Rankings for Other Countries
The IMD World Competitiveness rankings which was established in 1989, assesses 63 economies in four categories: economic performance, infrastructure, government efficiency and business efficiency.
The top five most competitive economies which dominated the list were Switzerland, which moved one place up to fourth, and the United Arab Emirates.
Indonesia showed the biggest improvement, among countries in the Asia-Pacific, jumping 11 places to the 32nd spot because of increased competence in the government sector as well as progress in infrastructure and business environments. The report also showed that it had the lowest labour cost across the 63 economies.
Growth in foreign direct investments and productivity drove Thailand five places to rank 25th this year, while Japan dropped to the 30th spot, hindered by a slow economy and government debt.
Venezuela however, stayed at the bottom, hit by inflation, poor access to credit and a weak economy.