PH climbs 5 places in WEF competitiveness ranking

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Metro Manila (CNNPhilippines) — Although the Philippine economy grew by a slower-than-expected 5.3 percent during the first half of 2015, the country has risen by five places in the World Economic Forum's (WEF) current Global Competitiveness Index (GCI).

In its Global Competitiveness Report 2015-2016 released on Wednesday (September 30), the WEF ranked the Philippines as the 47th most competitive country in the world, out of 140 economies. When grouped according to the WEF's productivity "pillars," the country received its highest rank in macroeconomic environment at 24th place, and its lowest rank in infrastructure at 90th place.

The WEF cited "inefficient government bureaucracy," "inadequate supply of infrastructure," and "corruption," respectively, as the top three most problematic factors for doing business in the country.

Singapore was ranked the most competitive Southeast Asian economy, at 2nd place in the overall index. Five other Southeast Asian states ranked in the upper half of the standings:

Malaysia: 18th

Thailand: 32nd

Indonesia: 37th

Philippines: 47th

Vietnam: 56th

"With the exception of Thailand, all five have improved their showing since 2007, most notably the Philippines, which has leapfrogged 17 places," the WEF noted.

WEF said that the Emerging and Developing Asia region — which includes the Philippines — has been the world's fastest-growing region since 2005 and looks set to retain this status in the medium term. "The region now accounts for some 30 percent of global GDP, with China alone accounting for 16 percent."

Switzerland, Singapore, and the U.S. were the top three most competitive economies, respectively. Germany, the Netherlands, Japan, Hong Kong, Finland, Sweden, and the U.K. rounded out the top 10.

"Although overall prospects remain positive, growth is expected to remain below the levels recorded in previous decades in most developed economies and in many emerging markets," WEF said.