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Ireland falls six places in world competitiveness rankings

Minister for Business Heather Humphreys has expressed her disappointment after Ireland fell six places in the latest IMD World Competitiveness Rankings.

Ireland is now ranked 12 in the world for competitiveness, down from sixth position last year.

“After several years of improvement, the decline in Ireland’s overall ranking in this year’s IMD publication is disappointing,” Minister Humphreys said.

“What it tells us is that we cannot become complacent about the hard-won gains of recent years.”

The United States returns to the top spot, followed by Hong Kong, Singapore, the Netherlands and Switzerland.

The remaining places in the top 10 are occupied largely by Nordic countries with Denmark, Norway and Sweden ranking 6th, 8th and 9th respectively.

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Despite the fall in competitiveness, Ireland is the third most competitive economy in the Euro area.

“I am acutely aware that Ireland’s competitiveness is hugely important to our continued business and economic success and the National Competitiveness Council will review the findings in detail,” Minister Humphreys said.

The Minister went on to say that her officials will examine the findings of the report to establish what actions can be taken to further improve the country’s competitiveness.

Ireland ranked first in the world by the IMD for productivity in industry, and the flexibility and adaptability of the country’s workforce.

The country’s tax regime sees Ireland ranked second for its competitiveness, while the country is ranked fifth for attracting and retaining talent, and fifth for the ease of starting a business.

The IMD World Competitiveness Ranking uses 258 indicators in its research methodology.

‘Hard’ data such as national employment and trade statistics are weighted twice as much as the ‘soft’’ data from an Executive Opinion Survey that measures the business perception of issues such as corruption, environmental concerns and quality of life.

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