2 Oct 2015

NZ edges up global competitive ranks

4:58 pm on 2 October 2015

New Zealand is the 16th most competitive country in the world, according to this year's Global Competitiveness Index.

Lambton Quay, Wellington; Generic technology phone population business

New Zealand's use of information technology is helping hold up its ranking. Photo: RNZ / Alexander Robertson

The index ranks countries on such factors as how innovative and efficient they are, the state of their infrastructure, their governance and their level of business sophistication.

New Zealand has improved its standing one notch from last year, and from 18th in 2013.

The country gets a "could do better" grade for government purchasing processes, investment in research, development and training, having enough engineers and scientists, and availability of finance for start-ups - among other things.

New Zealand's road and rail networks are marked as "middling" and could be improved.

But, on the positive side, the country's use of information technology and the standing of New Zealand's legal and political institutions and economic settings are given high marks.

The top of the competitive ladder is Switzerland followed by Singapore and the United States.

Meanwhile, Australia lags New Zealand - in 21st spot.