Colombia Improving in World Economic Forum Competitiveness Index
Colombia climbed five places – to 61st place — in the just-released World Economic Forum (WEF) “global competitiveness index 2015-2016.”
The index ranked Switzerland number-one for “competitiveness,” followed (in order) by Singapore, the United States, Germany, Netherlands, Japan, Hong Kong, Finland, Sweden and the United Kingdom.
According to WEF’s index, “Colombia improved for the second year in a row, which reflects continued efforts to improve competitiveness.
“The country’s performance is relatively stable across most [index measurement] pillars, with small improvements on most dimensions compared with last year [the 2014-2015 index].
“Yet, further improvement in the quality of the education system and in the country’s institutional framework are needed to achieve a higher level of competitiveness.”
According to WEF, Colombia’s “most problematic factors for doing business” are (in order) tax rates, followed by corruption, inadequate supply of infrastructure, inefficient government bureaucracy, complexity of tax regulations, access to financing and an inadequately educated workforce (see chart).
On a global basis, the index shows that “competitiveness — understood as higher productivity — is a key driver of growth and resilience,” according to WEF.
“The historic proportions of the economic crisis and the relative performance of economies since its onset in 2008 have shed light on how structural weaknesses can exacerbate the effects of, and hinder recovery from shocks.
“During the crisis, the more competitive economies systematically outperformed the least competitive in terms of economic growth: they either withstood the crisis better or recovered more quickly. This result holds true at every stage of development.
“At the heart of an economy’s competitiveness is its capacity to leverage talent. High unemployment figures weigh heavily on societies, risking not only prolonged lower demand but also the de-skilling of a significant segment of the labor force and growing discontent.
This holds even truer in the post-crisis years, which coincide with a fundamental shift away from the traditional manufacturing industry while the widespread use of ICT [information and communication technology] is generating entirely new industries and disrupting others. Talent-driven economies are best equipped to adapt to the changes brought about by this tech revolution and to reap their benefits.”