Australian global competitiveness lowest in 20 years

Australia

Australia’s global competitiveness ranking has dropped out of the top 20 for the first time in over 20 years, falling from 17 to 21 in the past year.

The 2017 edition of IMD’s World Competitiveness Yearbook has again ranked Hong Kong first, followed by Switzerland and Singapore as the US dropped out of the top three to rank fourth.

Rod Maddock, chairman of the Committee for Economic Development of Australia, said issues such as energy infrastructure, the corporate tax rate and how to skill Australia’s workforce to take advantage of digital disruption were areas where Australia performed poorly.

Among government efficiency rankings, the corporate tax rate was the area where Australia had the poorest ranking at 50.

“Other areas where we performed poorly were the state of the budget (40) and effective personal income tax rate (44),” said Maddock.

The latest edition of the IMD yearbook has introduced a separate digital competitiveness ranking, where Australia came in at 15.

The areas of most concern were training and education, where Australia ranked 51, and business agility with a ranking of 42.

“These two go hand in hand because if people have the right skills and training then business can use these talents to adapt and embrace new opportunities as technological change disrupts business,” said Maddock.