PH rises 6 spots in WEF competitiveness index
MANILA, Philippines - The Philippines jumped six notches up in the 2013 World Economic Forum's Global Competitiveness Report.
The Philippines now ranks 59th out of 144 economies in the report, from 65th place in last year's report.
In the report, the WEF cited the Philippine government's efforts to combat corruption.
The WEF noted that the Philippines has made positive improvements in all aspects of the index.
The Philippines also saw improvements in its ranking in institutions "pillar" (79th), government efficiency (75th) and ethics and corruption (87th).
"The current government, which came into power in 2010, has made the fight against corruption an absolute priority; corruption had historically been one of the country’s biggest drags on competitiveness. There are signs that these efforts are producing results: in the ethics and corruption category, the country has jumped from 135th in 2010 to 87th this year," the WEF said.
However, the WEF noted the Philippines' improvements are "coming from such a low base that the country cannot afford to be complacent."
Gains of good governance
Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima attributed the Philippines' improved ranking in the competitiveness report to the "gains of good governance" under President Aquino's administration.
"This is a significant jump from our ranking of 87th in the report in 2009. Truly, the gains of good governance under President Aquino have resounded to the business community, as investors in the Philippines now enjoy a playing field that is more stable, more transparent, and more level than it has ever been," he said.
Purisima noted in the institutions pillar, a key marker of governance, the Philippines rose 15 spots to 79th place.
"This ranking is a sign that our partners have observed less diversion of public funds, less wasteful spending, and more efficient legal and administrative frameworks that support business in the Philippines," he said.
The Philippines also jumped 25 places to rank 69th in the "innovation" pillar.
"As we make progress in further solidifying the gains of good governance, I fully expect to see the Philippine business environment become even more vibrant, more dynamic, and most importantly, more open and welcoming of opportunity. No doubt we will see even greater rises in the Global Competitiveness rankings in the future," he said.
Infrastructure, corruption still problematic
However, the respondents in the WEF survey cited several "problematic" factors for doing business in the country.
The number one problem is inadequate supply of infrastructure, followed by corruption and inefficient government bureaucracy.
The Global Competitiveness Report 2013-2014 assesses the competitiveness of 144 economies, providing insight into the drivers of their productivity and prosperity.
For the fifth year in a row, Switzerland topped the overall rankings.