Qatar ranked among the top 10 countries in adopting Information and Communication Technology (ICT), flexible work arrangements, digital skills, and the digital legal framework, and it is the second Arab country in this classification, according to the World Economic Forum's (WEF) Global Competitiveness Report 2020.
In previous years, Qatar achieved advanced positions in several areas that are among the main pillars covered in the report. Qatar was ranked first in the Arab world and among the top 10 countries in many indicators. In the institutional pillar, Qatar ranked seventh globally in the ‘efficiency of the legal framework’ index, sixth in the ‘government response to change’ index, and eighth in the ‘long-term government vision’ index.
The Global Competitiveness Report 2020 is a special edition this year, as the usual classifications of the report have been temporarily suspended due to the prevailing unusual circumstances, and the measures taken by governments in the wake of the global pandemic outbreak and economic recession. The 2021 edition will see a return to benchmarking, providing a refreshed framework to guide future economic growth.
The report outlines priorities for recovery and revival, assesses the features that helped countries be more effective in managing the pandemic, and provides an analysis of which countries are best poised for an economic transformation towards systems that combine “productivity,” “people,” and “planet” targets.
The competitiveness report is issued annually by the WEF, in co-operation with the Qatari Businessmen Association (QBA) and the Social and Economic Survey Research Institute of Qatar University (Sesri).
According to the study, “few economies are ready for long-term prosperity through improved public services, green investments, and digitisation.”
The special edition of the report examines how the recovery from Covid-19 crisis can build productive, sustainable and inclusive economic systems. It said that countries with advanced digital economies, strong social safety nets, and robust healthcare systems have managed the impact of the pandemic more effectively.
Similarly, the report measures which countries are best prepared for recovery and future economic transformation; country rankings have been suspended due to the extraordinary Covid-19 response measures by governments, it pointed out.
“The World Economic Forum has long encouraged policymakers to broaden their focus beyond short-term growth to long-term prosperity. This report makes clear the priorities for making economies more productive, sustainable and inclusive as we emerge from the crisis. The stakes for transforming our economic systems simply could not be higher,” said WEF founder and executive chairman Klaus Schwab.
“During this time of profound uncertainty, the health crisis and economic downturn have forced a fundamental rethink of growth and its relationship to outcomes for people and planet.
“Policy-makers have a remarkable opportunity to seize this moment and shape new economic systems that are highly productive while growing shared prosperity and environmental sustainability,” said WEF managing director Saadia Zahidi.
The concepts of economic transformation are relatively new, and data is limited. Data from 37 countries was mapped against the 11 priorities outlined in the report and found that while no country is fully prepared for recovery and economic transformation, some are better placed than others.
The report estimates that a 10% increase in readiness scores could lead to a $300bn increase in the GDP figures of these 37 countries combined. However, these priorities for transformation should be considered for their multiple effects on growth, inclusion, and sustainability.
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