Execs Rate U.S. Most Competitive Poll Of World Business Leaders Has U.S. On Top

MONDAY, MARCH 18, 1996

World business leaders rate the U.S. as the most competitive nation, followed by Singapore and Japan, according to a global survey released today.

Germany was fourth and South Korea fifth in the poll of 2,465 business leaders conducted annually by the International Institute for Management Development. Filling out the top 10 were Switzerland, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Malaysia and Britain.

Economic data will be added for the institute’s World Competitiveness Report issued in September, but it seems certain the United States will hold its lead, said Professor Stephane Garelli, director of the project.

The combined rankings will be held until the final report, but the United States leads in three of four categories and is in third place in the remaining category - aggressiveness in world markets.

Garelli stressed the importance of government support for competitiveness, but said the other ratings are major factors, too. They include a society’s ability to adapt and sustain competitiveness as well as a country’s attractiveness for investors.

“A lot of people are looking at the United States as a new El Dorado for competitiveness,” Garelli said.

Noteworthy in this year’s report was how business leaders in Japan, Germany and Switzerland rated their own governments’ support for competitiveness much lower than their international standings.

Japan, in third place globally, was ranked only 27th by Japanese business executives. The German government, fourth globally, was 17th among German executives, and the Swiss, sixth in the world, was 23rd in Switzerland.


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