India has moved one notch higher, to the 44th place in terms of competitiveness, in the annual rankings compiled by International Institute for Management Development (IMD) which placed the US in the top slot. The US became the most competitive economy globally driven by its strength in economic performance and infrastructure, followed by Hong Kong and Singapore in the second and third place, respectively. The Netherlands and Switzerland were the other two nations in the top five slots. This year, though India has moved up to 44th position worldwide, up one rank from last year, it is ranked the 12th most competitive economy out of the 14 Asian countries on the list.
Regarding India, the report said, “some of the challenges which India has to face for the year 2018 would be skilling of manpower and employment generation, streamlining the implementation of goods and services tax and balancing high growth with sustainable development goals”. The report further noted that “digital literacy and adequate bandwidth at rural areas and mobilisation of resources for infrastructure development needs are few more key areas where the government needs to concentrate”. The other top 10 countries include Denmark (6th), the UAE (7th), Norway (8th) and Sweden (9th) and Canada (10th). Meanwhile, China (13th) continued with its steady rise in rankings over the past five years, climbing 10 spots since 2014, fuelled by a strong economic performance of its domestic market and workforce employment.
“Countries at the top of the rankings share an above average performance across all competitiveness factors, but their competitiveness mix varies. One economy, for example, may build its competitiveness strategy around a particular aspect such as its tangible and intangible infrastructure; another may approach competitiveness through their governmental efficiency,” said Arturo Bris, Director of the IMD World Competitiveness Center. The IMD World Competitiveness Center, a research group at IMD business school in Switzerland, has published the rankings every year since 1989. This year 63 countries are ranked with Cyprus and Saudi Arabia making their first appearance.