Na­tion bumped to No. 15 by Qatar on WEF Global Com­pet­i­tive­ness Re­port

Re­port cites pol­i­tics, gov’t red tape and lack of ca­pac­ity to in­no­vate


Tai­wan fell by one spot to No. 15 on the World Eco­nomic Fo­rum’s (WEF) Global Com­pet­i­tive­ness Re­port 2015-2016, which was re­leased yesterday.

Po­lit­i­cal in­sta­bil­ity, gov­ern­ment bu­reau­cracy and in­suf­fi­cient ca­pac­ity to in­no­vate were the top three fac­tors that led to Tai­wan’s drop in rank­ing, ac­cord­ing to the re­port. On the bright side, Tai­wan’s com­pet­i­tive­ness shines through in its low crime and theft rate, public health and low in­fla­tion.

Na­tional De­vel­op­ment Coun­cil (NDC, ) Min­is­ter Duh Tyz­zjiun ( ) cited two fac­tors that re­sulted in Tai­wan’s low­ered rank­ing — lack of enough sci­en­tists and engi­neers and the poor ex­tent of mar­ket­ing venues for Tai­wanese cor­po­ra­tions over­seas. Both are valid re­flec­tions of Tai­wan’s con­cerns of a brain-drain and lack of global com­pet­i­tive­ness in re­cent years.

Tai­wan’s Global Com­pet­i­tive­ness In­dex (GCI), which is what the WEF re­port’s rank­ing is based on, shows Tai­wan’s ba­sic re­quire­ment in­dex at No. 14, ef­fi­ciency en­hancers at No. 15, and in­no­va­tion and so­phis­ti­ca­tion fac­tors at No. 16 in the rank­ings among coun­tries.

Un­der the three in­dexes are 12 cat­e­gories that are used to cal­cu­late each coun­try’s GCI scores, oth­er­wise known as the pil­lars of com­pet­i­tive­ness. Un­der ba­sic re­quire­ments, Tai­wan’s first pil­lar, in­sti­tu­tions, ranked at No. 22; the sec­ond pil­lar, in­fra­struc­ture, at No. 12; the third pil­lar, macroe­co­nomic en­vi­ron­ment, at No. 13; and the fourth pil­lar, health and pri­mary ed­u­ca­tion, placed No. 14 in the rank­ings among coun­tries.

Un­der ef­fi­ciency en­hancers, the fifth pil­lar on higher ed­u­ca­tion and train­ing, Tai­wan ranked at No. 14; the six pil­lar, goods mar­ket ef­fi­ciency at No. 13, the sev­enth pil­lar la­bor mar­ket ef­fi­ciency at No. 22, the eighth pil­lar, fi­nan­cial mar­ket de­vel­op­ment, at No. 17; the ninth pil­lar, tech­no­log­i­cal readi­ness, at No. 28; and the 10th pil­lar, mar­ket size, placed at No. 20 in the rank­ings. Un­der in­no­va­tion and so­phis­ti­ca­tion fac­tors, the 11th pil­lar, busi­ness so­phis­ti­ca­tion, ranked at No. 21, while the 12th pil­lar, in­no­va­tion, ranked No. 11 among coun­tries.

Tai­wan came in first place world­wide in its HIV preven­tion ef­forts and low in­fla­tion rate. What was no­table is the im­prove­ment in rank­ing in HIV preven­tion — Tai­wan was ranked No. 58 among coun­tries last year. In la­bor mar­ket ef­fi­ciency, Tai­wan’s pay and pro­duc­tiv­ity ranked 9th. Trans­parency of gov­ern­ment pol­i­cy­mak­ing fell to 15 from its pre­vi­ous 9th place.

Ac­cord­ing to the GCI rank­ings, Switzer­land takes first place again for the sev­enth con­sec­u­tive year. Sin­ga­pore re­mained in sec­ond place and the United States, third. Ger­many im­proved by one place to fourth, fol­lowed by the Nether­lands mak­ing a come­back to fifth place. Ja­pan came in sixth, Hong Kong in sev­enth, Fin­land in eighth, mak­ing this year its worst rank­ing ever, and Swe­den at ninth. The United King­dom rounded up the top 10.

Nor­way came in at 11th, Den­mark at 12th, Canada at 13th, and Qatar re­placed Tai­wan’s 2015 rank­ing at 14. Main­land China ranked 28th, the same as last year.

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