The World Economic Forum recently released its Global Competitiveness Report 2018. The report shows that the United States has returned to the #1 position in overall competitiveness. Singapore was #2, Germany was #3, Japan was #6, China was #28 and Russia was #43.
There are twelve key benchmarks that measure a country’s competitiveness and they include the following:
- Intuitions. Includes the rule of law and ensuring fair and equal treatment. The U.S. was ranked #13.
- Infrastructure. The benchmark includes everything from broadband to airports to highways. With some of the oldest legacy infrastructure in the world, the U.S. needs to invest much more to move up from #9.
- Internet, Communications and Technology. America’s diversity and individualism hurt, as too many people opt-out of state-of-the-art technology. The U.S. was ranked #27.
- Macroeconomic Stability. This benchmark refers to safety provided by monetary and fiscal policies. The United States is ranked #34. This rank surprised me considering how the United States continues to lead in setting monetary policies in the world.
- Human Health. The United States was ranked #47. We pay more and get less in healthcare than almost any other developed country.
- Skills. Our public schools continue to play a role as a “leveler” for the general population and we excel in higher education. The U.S. was ranked #3.
- Product Market. This benchmark is a country’s willingness to create and open markets and a level playing field. The U.S. was ranked #3.
- Labor Market. America is ranked #1 in this benchmark because of the “at will’ employment model that allows businesses to respond quickly to economic realities and to remain highly competitive in any market.
- Financial System. The U.S. is #1 in venture capital, equities and bonds. Transparency and efficiency make the U.S. market the envy of the world.
- Market Size. Only China is bigger in market size than the United States. The U.S. was ranked #2.
- Business Dynamism. The capacity of the private sector in the United States to generate and adopt new technologies and new ways of working is unmatched. The U.S. has a culture of risk-taking, embracing change and creating new business models that produce huge returns and new opportunities. The U.S. was ranked #1.
- Innovation Capability. The United States is the second most innovative country in the world. Germany was ranked #1.
It would be an interesting exercise to apply the same criteria to the RGV’s competitiveness and to see how we measure up in a global economy.