Sweden has overtaken the USA and Singapore to claim the number two spot in the ranking of the world’s most competitive economies. The World Economic Forum placed Sweden just behind Switzerland, which has claimed first place in the Global Competitiveness Report for the second year running.
Sweden climbed two places to knock the United States out of second place and down to fourth, while Singapore maintained its lock on third position in the Geneva-based organisation’s report. Sweden’s other Nordic neighbours also enjoyed high rankings, with Finland scooping seventh place, Denmark ninth, and Norway 14th.
Chief economist at the Confederation of Swedish Enterprise (Svenskt Naringsliv), Stefan Folster, said high growth, sound public finances and a strong economy could all be thanked for helping Sweden reach second place in the table. What lies ahead, however, cannot be predicted by the rankings, he warned.
“Unfortunately, there is no connection at all between these rankings and future growth. These lists focus quite a bit on macroeconomic factors, but very little on conditions for small business, for example,” Folster told the TT news agency.
Sweden was number one in some of the survey’s categories, including the availability of technologies, the ethical behaviour of firms, and private sector spending. However, the Scandinavian country lost points for factors such as high tax rates, tax regulations and restrictive labour policies.
The survey is based on responses from 13,500 business leaders in 139 countries across the globe.