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India Placed At 68th Position in the Global Competitiveness Index 2019

India has slipped down 10 places to be placed at 68th rank in the recently published Global Competitiveness Index 2019 by the World Economic Forum (WEF). The slide was witnessed largely due to the improvements achieved by several other economies. Most glaring being, Singapore replacing the USA as the world’s most competitive economy.

India is one of the worst performing BRICS nations alongwith Brazil, who is placed at the 71st rank. The fall is majorly attributed to the limited ICT (information communications and technology), adoption, poor health conditions and low healthy life expectancy.

About the Report
The Global Competitiveness Report assesses the ability of countries to provide high levels of prosperity to their citizens. This in turn depends on how productively a country uses available resources. Therefore, the Global Competitiveness Index measures the set of institutions, policies, and factors that set the sustainable current and medium-term levels of economic prosperity.

It is made up of over 110 variables, of which two thirds come from the Executive Opinion Survey, and one third comes from publicly available sources such as the United Nations. The variables are organized into twelve pillars, with each pillar representing an area considered as an important determinant of competitiveness.

Key Highlights of the Index
The study highlighted that the global economy is unprepared for a major slowdown.

According to WEF, India’s drop to the 68th position is relatively small. A number of similarly placed economies like Columbia, South Africa and Turkey improved over the past few years and hence has overtaken India.

  • Singapore has become world’s most competitive economy in 2019, pushing the USA to second position. Hong Kong is placed third followed by Netherlands and Switzerland at fourth and fifth position respectively.
  • India ranks high in terms of macroeconomic stability and market size, while its financial sector is relatively deep and stable despite high delinquency rate, which contributes to weakening the soundness of its banking system.
  • India also ranks high up in regards with corporate governance, at the 15th place while it is ranked second globally for shareholder governance. The country ranks third for both market size and renewable energy regulation.
  • India has been ranked a lowly 109 out of the 141 economies surveyed, in terms of healthy life expectancy which is one of the lowest outside the African continent.
  • With a ratio 0.26 female workers to male workers, India is place at 128th It is also placed at 118th position in terms of meritocracy and incentivisation.

The report demonstrated that with strong innovation capacities like Korea, Japan and France or increasing capability like China, India and Brazil must improve their talent base and functioning of their labour markets. Besides, India needs to grow its skills base, while its product market efficiency is undermined by a lack of trade openness and the labour market is characterized by a lack of worker rights’ protections, insufficiently developed active labour market policies and critically low participation of women.

About WEF
The World Economic Forum (WEF), based in Geneva, Switzerland, was founded in 1971 as a not-for-profit organization. The objective of the WEF is described as “committed to improving the state of the world by engaging business, political, academic, and other leaders of society to shape global, regional, and industry agendas”.

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