Philippines ranked 85th among world’s most networked economies

Internet cafes are all over the country nowadays. Schools and universities are heavily investing in their I.T. infrastructure. Mobile handsets are permanent fixtures to every Filipinos. Coffee shops Customers with notebooks on their table. You will also see people walking around with their MP3 headsets on their ears. Teens playing with their PSP and Nintendo DS.

Given all the technology gadgets around us. One would think that the Philippines is one tech-savvy country. We better think again because according to a recent World Economic Forum Global Information Technology Report 2009, the Philippines is only ranked 85.

Denmark and Sweden once again lead the rankings of The Global Information Technology Report 2008-2009, released by the World Economic Forum. They are followed by the United States which is up one position, thus confirming its pre-eminence in networked readiness in the current times of economic slowdown. Singapore (4), Switzerland (5) and the other Nordic countries together with the Netherlands and Canada complete the top 10.

The Report underlines that good education fundamentals and high levels of technological readiness and innovation are essential engines of growth needed to overcome the current economic crisis.

“The development story of the most networked countries in the world, including the Nordic countries, Singapore and the United States among others, has owed much to a consistent focus in the national agenda on education excellence, innovation and an extensive ICT access. This success stands as a reminder for leaders in both the public and private sectors not to lose focus on ICT as an important enabler of growth and competitiveness in times of crisis,” said Irene Mia, Senior Economist of the Global Competitiveness Network at the World Economic Forum and Co-Editor of the Report.

The Report is produced by the World Economic Forum in cooperation with INSEAD, the leading international business school, and is sponsored again this year by Cisco Systems. Published for the eighth consecutive year with record coverage of 134 economies worldwide, the Report remains the world’s most comprehensive and authoritative international assessment of the impact of ICT on the development process and the competitiveness of nations.

The Networked Readiness Index (NRI), featured in the Report, examines how prepared countries are to use ICT effectively on three dimensions: the general business, regulatory and infrastructure environment for ICT; the readiness of the three key stakeholder groups; individuals, businesses and governments; to use and benefit from ICT; and their actual usage of the latest information and communication technologies available.

Out of the 134 countries, the Philippines with a score of 3.60 is ranked number 85. The Philippines was ranked 81 for the year 2007-2008 and 61 for the year 2006 – 2007. From 61 to 81 to 85? Something wrong somewhere?

Other Asian countries that made it to the list are: South Korea (5.37). Hongkong (5.30), Taiwan (5.30), Japan (5.19), Thailand (4.14), Malaysia (4.76), China (4.15), Brunei (3.87), Kazakhstan (3.79), Vietnam (3.79), Sri Lanka (3.79), Indonesia (3.62), Mongolia (3.43), Pakistan (3.31). Cambodia (2.89) Nepal (2.85), and Bangladesh (2.70).

Unless we put our acts together, we will see our ranking slipping further down the list, or perhaps we may no longer be part of the list.

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