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PH falters in global talent competitiveness, falls seven notches in WTR

Posted: 2016-12-05

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The Philippines slipped seven notches in the World Talent Report (WTR), ranking 51st out of 61 countries in 2016 from 44th in 2015.

The WTR is prepared by the International Institute of Management Development (IMD), which has been publishing the annual World Competitiveness Yearbook since 1989. The WTR uses international statistical data supplemented by an Executive Opinion Survey to assess the talent competitiveness or the ability to develop, attract, and retain talent for enterprises to maximize their performance in 61 economies. The rankings are based on three factors: Investment and development, Appeal, and Readiness.

The Investment and development factor captures the Philippines’ weakest points, with the country consistently ranking near the bottom in the past five years, this year at 60th out of 61, just ahead of India. The country’s worst ranked criteria under this factor are Total Public Expenditure on Education as a percentage of GDP (58th), Pupil-Teacher Ratio in Primary Education (60th), Pupil-Teacher Ratio in Secondary Education (61st) and Female Labor Force as a percentage of total labor force (49th). On the other hand, the country did better in terms of the sufficiency of Apprenticeships (23rd) and the importance accorded to Employee Training in companies (25th).

Under the Appeal factor, the Philippines showed middling performance, ranking 35th out of 61. The Philippines ranked 13th most appealing in terms of the Effective Personal Income Tax Rate as a percentage of an income equal to GDP per capita. However, the country performed poorly in terms of the protection of Personal Security and Private Property Rights (49th) and Remuneration in Services Professions (54th). Other notable criteria under the Appeal factor are Brain Drain affecting the competitiveness of the economy (44th) and Quality of Life (44th).

The Philippines placed among the upper half of economies in the Readiness factor, ranking 23rd out of 61. The country did well in terms of the availability of Skilled Labor (4th), the availability of Competent Senior Managers (14th), Language Skills (18th), and the International Experience of senior managers (21st). Relatively weak performance in this factor was recorded for criteria on the emphasis on Science in Schools (35th) and the ability of the Educational System to meet the needs of a competitive economy (31st).

The 2016 rank of 51st out of 61 marks the Philippines’ weakest performance in the WTR from 2007 to 2016. Over this ten-year period, the Philippines peaked in 2013, ranking 29th out of 60 countries, while the country’s average rank is 42nd.

Among Asia-Pacific economies, the Philippines comes in 12th out of 14, ahead of India and Mongolia. The region generally did not fare well in this year’s WTR, recalling a similarly weak showing in the World Competitiveness Ranking published in May. Hong Kong is the only Asian economy to rise in the WTR, coming in at 10th place and becoming the region’s only representative in the Top 10. Since last year, Singapore has fallen from 10th to 15th, Malaysia from 15th to 19th, Japan from 26th to 30th, Thailand from 34th to 37th, South Korea from 31st to 38th, Mainland China from 40th to 43rd, and Indonesia from 41st to 44th.

This year, the top 10 economies in the world for talent competitiveness are Switzerland, Denmark, Belgium, Sweden, the Netherlands, Finland, Norway, Austria, Luxembourg, and Hong Kong. The notable dominance of Nordic countries may be attributed to strong educational systems that cultivate quality local talent in high quantities. Smaller economies also seem to be at an advantage in organizing effective systems for talent management. 

The AIM RSN Policy Center for Competitiveness (formerly AIM Policy Center) has been the Philippine partner institute of IMD for the annual release of the World Competitiveness Yearbook since 1997. This is the third edition of the IMD World Talent Report.

The full IMD World Talent Report 2016 is available at For more information, contact AIM RSN PCC Policy Center for Competitiveness via email at or call (02)892-4011 local 5105. 


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