by Tan Weizhen 04:47 AM Sep 28, 2011

SINGAPORE – Singapore has leaped to third place in a study that ranks the competitiveness of 66 economies in the information technology (IT) market.

In its best showing since this study by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) began in 2007, the Republic jumped six places. The United States and Finland snagged the top two spots.

The EIU’s IT Industry Competitiveness 2011 Index attributed the improved ranking to inroads in Singapore’s research and development environment, with two-thirds of the world’s top 100 IT companies based in Singapore. The Republic took fifth place globally for this area.

It also listed two other areas that Singapore has done well in – its support for IT industry development, and human capital environment, which takes into account the number of students in higher education, people enrolled in the IT sector and quality of skills here. Singapore was deemed to have “vastly improved” in the latter indicator.

Besides these three indicators, countries were ranked based on their overall business environment, IT infrastructure and legal environment.

In jumping to third spot, Singapore surpassed countries such as the United Kingdom, Australia and Sweden. Malaysia and India were two other countries which also saw their rankings rise by 11 and 10 spots, respectively. For Malaysia, it was due to its surge in R&D activity, and India improved on the human capital development front.

Countries that saw a drop in ranking included China and Canada, due to their poor record in managing intellectual property rights. Iran took bottom spot.

The study noted that the competitive environment in the IT sector is heating up globally and countries have to continually invest in IT to hold steady. The US, despite its economic turmoil, still achieved top position due to its foundation built up through years of investments, said the study.

“As the global economy starts to recover, it is more important than ever for governments to take a long-term view of IT industry development,”said Mr Robert Holleyman, president of Business Software Alliance, which published the report.

“Policy-makers cannot not just look at this issue on an annual basis or they risk being left behind. They must assess the next seven to nine years, and invest accordingly, in order to make substantive gains in IT competitiveness.”

– Posted using BlogPress from my 4GiPhone

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