THE World Economic forum revealed that the Philippines ranked fifth among the most competitive economies in Southeast Asia with a score of 62.1 percent in the latest Global Competitiveness report released on Wednesday, October 15.

The report also indicated that the country ranked 56th out of 149 countries globally. The said results were not comparable to previous reports as the said study adopted a new competitiveness index.

Among the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) countries, Singapore ranked the most competitive with 83.5 percent and also the second globally after the United States of America (USA) with 85.6 percent.

The other ASEAN countries on the world’s top 50 list were Malaysia on the 25th place with 74.4 percent, Thailand on the 38th place with 67.5 percent and Indonesia on the 45th place with 64.9 percent.

The report mainly focused at 12 pillars, namely: institutions, infrastructure, information and communication technology adoption, macroeconomic stability, health, education and skills, product market, labor market, financial system, market size, business dynamism and innovation capability.

The report suggests that it is necessary for the Philippines to exert extra effort in improving its business dynamism as reported by The Philippine Daily Inquirer.

Time to start a business ranked 115th place, cost of starting a business at 97th place and insolvency recovery rates at 112th place. Such ranking remained as weak indicators and are still seen as disruptive factors for doing business, according to the Makati Business Club (MBC).

“While time and cost of starting a business remain as problematic factors for the business community, it is worthy to note that the Philippines ranks high in e-participation, or the use of online platforms to link government information to citizens,” said MBC chair Edgar Chua.

“With the recently passed Ease of Doing Business Act, we remain optimistic that the government will be able to sustain these gains and address the concerns of efficiency in doing business,” Chua added.

The said Global Competitiveness Index 4.0 assesses the microeconomic and macroeconomic foundations of national competitiveness, which is defined as the set of institutions, policies, and factors that determine the level of productivity of a country.
World Economic Forum founder and executive chairman Klaus Schwab implemented a new index to cope up with the fourth industrial revolution (4IR) as it is an ever-changing landscape.

“These developments—the 4IR and the consequences of the Great Recession—are redefining the pathways to prosperity and, indeed, the very notion of prosperity, with profound implications for policy-making. Concerned leaders are grappling for answers and solutions, aiming to go beyond short-term, reactionary measures,” Schwab said.

“In this context, the World Economic Forum is introducing the new Global Competitiveness Index 4.0, a much-needed economic compass, building on 40 years of experience in benchmarking the drivers of long-term competitiveness. After having conceptualized the Fourth Industrial Revolution, the World Economic Forum is contributing to global thinking and policy-making by integrating the notion of the 4IR into the definition of competitiveness,” he added.

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