Fri, Jan 22, 2016 - Page 13 News List

Taiwan slips in global competitiveness ranking

Staff writer, with CNA

Importers and Exporters Association of Taipei chairman Huang Cheng-tsung, second right, and other attendees pose at a news conference in Taipei yesterday.

Photo: Lo Chien-yi, Taipei Times

Taiwan’s competitiveness in international trade fell last year, marking the fourth consecutive year of decline as the global economy continues to soften, a survey showed yesterday.

Taiwan’s ranking fell one spot to 15th place, according to the Importers and Exporters Association of Taipei, which conducted the poll on the global trade environment and growth potential in key and emerging markets.

It is the lowest ranking since the association started conducting the annual survey eight years ago.

The survey, which covers a total of 54 nations and regions, looked at several factors, such as a nation’s global competitive edge, trade freedom, ease of trade and trade risks.

Despite the fall, Taiwan remained one of the most highly recommended nations to trade with, the association said.

Taiwan is facing increasing competition in the global market, particularly from Chinese competitors, the association said.

In addition, Taiwan appears to be losing its ability to attract foreign investment and has seen its talent pool shrink, the association said. The association urged the Legislative Yuan to pass the trade services agreement with China and push for the nation’s bid to join regional trade blocs, especially the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

Membership in the international blocs can boost Taiwan’s trade competitiveness, the association said.

The association said that the government should set up a task force to help Taiwanese companies participate in China’s “One Belt, One Road” initiative, a development framework that focuses on expanding China’s influence throughout Eurasia.

The government should also establish a think tank to study the ASEAN economic community and encourage local firms to seek business opportunities related with the Internet of Things, it said.

Singapore topped the ranking in the survey, followed by the US, the UK, Germany, Hong Kong, New Zealand, the Netherlands, Canada, Japan, and Australia.

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