Thailand’s overall competitiveness ranking rose to the 27th spot this year from No 30 last year, according to the 25th-anniversary world competitiveness rankings of 60 economies released today by IMD, a top-ranked global business school based in Switzerland.
The challenge in 2013 for Thailand is to accelerate regulatory reform to reduce bureaucracy and stimulate Asean investment, expedite Bt2 trillion worth of transport-infrastructure mega-projects to enhance national and regional competitiveness, and boost national energy security and promote renewable energy, IMD said.
Thailand’s economic-performance ranking this year moved up to the ninth spot from No 15, while business efficiency moved up to 18th from 23rd. The infrastructure ranking moved up one level to 48th.
Among highlights of the 2013 overall ranking, the United States regained the No 1 spot, thanks to a rebounding financial sector, an abundance of technological innovation and successful companies. China (21) and Japan (24) are also increasing their competitiveness. In the case of Japan, Abenomics seems to be having an initial impact on the dynamism of the economy.
In Europe, the most competitive nations include Switzerland (2), Sweden (4) and Germany (9), whose success relies on export-oriented manufacturing, diversified economies, strong small and medium-sized enterprises, and fiscal discipline. Like last year, the rest of Europe is heavily constrained by austerity programmes that are delaying recovery and calling into question the timeliness of the measures proposed.
The BRICS economies have enjoyed mixed fortunes. China (21) and Russia (42) rose in the rankings, while India (40), Brazil (51) and South Africa (53) all fell. Emerging economies in general remain highly dependent on the global economic recovery, which seems to be delayed.
In Latin America, Mexico (32) has seen a small revival in its competitiveness that now needs to be confirmed over time and by the continuous implementation of structural reforms.
Professor Stephane Garelli, director of the IMD World Competitiveness Centre, said: “While the euro zone remains stalled, the robust comeback of the US to the top of the competitiveness rankings, and better news from Japan, have revived the austerity debate. Structural reforms are unavoidable, but growth remains a prerequisite for competitiveness. In addition, the harshness of austerity measures too often antagonises the population. In the end, countries need to preserve social cohesion to deliver prosperity.”
Source : The Nation Thailand | 30 May 2013