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PH competitiveness ranking falls

The Philippines’ competitiveness ranking fell this year to eighth in Asean behind Vietnam and Brunei Darussalam, from the previous sixth, prompting the Makati Business Club (MBC) to urge the government to implement changes “at a much faster pace.”

According to the Global Competitiveness Report 2017-2018, Vietnam and Brunei Darussalam recorded substantial improvements in their standing, thus were able to jump ahead of the Philippines.

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The Philippines did go up a notch in its global competitiveness ranking, placing 56th in 2017 from 57th last year.

However, Brunei Darussalam jumped 12 notches this year to 46th, from 58th previously. Meanwhile, Vietnam went up five more ranks, placing 55th from 60th previously.

“Despite its one-notch gain, the Philippines has slid further down among Asean countries, the only country with a considerable decline in regional ranking,” MBC said in a statement.

The report’s competitiveness ranking is based on the Global Competitiveness Index (GCI), which covers 12 categories—deemed the pillars of competitiveness—that paint a comprehensive picture of how competitive a country is. The report covers 137 economies.
Competitiveness, in this context, is defined by the World Economic Forum as the set of institutions, policies and factors that determine the level of productivity of a country.

“It is good to see that we have maintained our overall competitiveness and even moved one notch higher. However, as we implement changes to improve, other countries are doing the same. In fact, Vietnam and Brunei have overtaken us this year,” said MBC Chair Edgar Chua.

“We therefore need to do much more at a much faster pace. We call on Congress to focus on passing priority bills identified by the business sector, especially the Comprehensive Tax Reform Program and not allow itself to be diverted by various political maneuvers like impeachment proceedings,” he said.

Weeks earlier, MBC issued a statement warning how the slew of impeachment cases filed against the country’s highest ranking officials would negatively affect investor perception.

Citing the report, MBC said the Philippines could make large gains in competitiveness by improving infrastructure, health and education.

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TAGS: Business, Makati Business Club (MBC)
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