India Slips 10 Places On WEF’s Global Competitiveness Index, Singapore On Top
India has slipped 10 places to rank 68th on World Economic Forum’s competitiveness index, largely due to improvements witnessed by several other economies.
Singapore has replaced the U.S. as the world's most competitive economy.
India is among the worst-performing BRICS nations in the WEF index, along with Brazil. BRICS is an acronym to represent Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, seen as the world’s fastest growing developing economies.
India ranks high in terms of macroeconomic stability and market size, while its financial sector is relatively deep and stable despite the high delinquency rate.
India ranks fifteenth in terms of corporate governance and second for shareholder governance, the WEF study showed. It is ranked third both in terms of market size and renewable energy regulation.
India also punches above its development status when it comes to innovation, which is well ahead of most emerging economies and on par with several advanced economies, the report said.
These positives contrast with major shortcomings in some of the basic enablers of competitiveness in case of India, the WEF said, flagging limited ICT adoption, poor health conditions and low healthy life expectancy.
India is ranked 109 out of 141 countries in healthy life expectancy, one of the shortest outside Africa and significantly below the South Asian average.
India also needs to grow its skills base. Its product market efficiency is undermined by a lack of trade openness and the labour market is characterised by a lack of worker-rights protection, insufficiently developed active labour market policies and critically low participation of women.
India has 26 female workers for every 100 male counterparts, WEF said, ranking the country at the 128th spot on the metric. It is ranked at 118 in terms of meritocracy and incentivisation and 107 for skills.
In the overall rankings, India is followed by some of its neighbours, including Sri Lanka at 84, Bangladesh at 105, Nepal at 108 and Pakistan at 110.
The 10-point drop in India’s rankings may look dramatic, but the decline in the country's competitiveness score is relatively small, WEF said.
A number of similarly-placed economies, including Colombia, South Africa and Turkey, improved over the past year and hence have overtaken India.