The World Economic Forum has ranked Finland as the eighth most competitive economy in the world – a drop of four places compared to last year.
The ranking said that Finland’s macroeconomic indicators are a cause for concern, but the underlying fundamentals of the economy remain strong.
Finland’s place on the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Index for 2015-2016 dropped to eighth place – a year ago Finland placed fourth on the list. According to the report, Finland is the most competitive among the Nordic countries.
Finland’s slide down the rankings were partly due to “successive shocks” to its information technology and paper industries and one of its largest export markets, Russia.
According to the report, Finland’s GDP was 6 percent smaller than in 2008, but due in part to its high standings in other areas, the country could turn the situation around.
The report’s authors lauded Finland’s long-term growth-promoting factors, saying that “its public institutions are rated as the most transparent and efficient in the world; its higher education and training system is excellent; and it has a strong capacity for innovation.”
To facilitate a recovery, the report suggested that Finland should fix “long-standing rigidities in its labour market especially the centralized wage-bargaining system,” which, it says contributes to the country’s 9.5 percent unemployment rate.
At top among Nordics
Finland finds itself at the top among the Nordic countries and fourth most competitive among European countries.
Roger Wessman, who previously worked as head economist at Nordea and Evli banks said that the report’s results about Finland shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone and that he remained positive.
“Everyone knows that things have been going relatively badly in the Finnish economy lately,” Wessman said. “But we’re still [ranking] quite high on the list, so in terms of competitiveness many things are going well.”
The WEF index compared 140 countries. The top three most competitive were Switzerland, Singapore and the United States.
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