The Philippines ranked 64th out of 141 countries in this year’s Global Competitiveness Report, eight places lower from its spot as 56th in 2018 due to lower rankings in macroeconomic stability and information and communication technology (ICT) adoption.
The report spearheaded by the World Economic Forum (WEF), which measures a country’s productivity level, noted that the Philippines’ competitiveness score receded 0.3 to 61.9 from 62.1 last year. This also places it down a notch as 6th among nine Southeast Asian peers covered by the report.
Comparatively, Singapore emerged as the most competitive, coveting the top global spot with a score of 84.8. In Southeast Asia, Singapore is followed by Malaysia (74.6), Thailand (68.1), Indonesia (64.6), Brunei Darussalam (62.8), the Philippines (61.9), Vietnam (61.5), Cambodia (52.1) and Lao (50.1).
Of the 12 pillars comprising the competitiveness index, the Philippines’ ICT adoption declined the most, moving backwards to 88th this year from 67th last year. This was followed by the macroeconomic stability pillar, which slipped to 55th from 43rd despite retaining a score of 90.
The WEF attributed this to higher inflation of 4 percent from last year’s average rate of 2.5 percent. The country experienced soaring inflation of as much as 6.7 percent last year, although the rate has cooled down to 0.9 percent in September 2019.
Moreover, the health pillar emerged as the country’s weakest, at the 102nd spot out of 141 countries, as healthy life expectancy declines to 65.6 years from 67.6 years last year.
Meanwhile, the incidence of corruption under the institution’s pillar improved to the 85th spot from 95th last year. The whole institutions pillar also improved, boosted by new indicators added under it this year including those measuring commitment to sustainability: energy efficiency regulation, renewable energy regulation and environment-related treaties in force.