Press Release

Global Competitiveness Index: Germany a world leader

World Economic Forum hails German business sophistication, infrastructure, innovation and workforce

Berlin (gtai) - Germany has maintained its top-5 position in the WEF’s annual competitiveness ranking of 144 countries. The report, released today, called out the country’s highly sophisticated businesses (3rd place), high levels of R&D innovation (6th), high-quality infrastructure (7th), and “top-notch” on-the-job training system (6th) for particular praise.

German companies spend heavily on R&D (5th) and can rely on an institutional framework, including collaboration with universities (10th) and research labs (8th) to support their innovation efforts, the report notes.

“The German R&D landscape is very buoyant and this is reflected in the WEF report,” says Marc Lehnfeld, German market expert at Germany Trade & Invest. “In 2012, public and private spending on research projects in Germany amounted to nearly EUR 80 billion – or around 3 percent of GDP. This figure is set to rise as newer figures become available. More than two thirds of R&D expenditure is accounted for by research-intensive private business.”

The report goes on to underline that German companies, which are predominantly medium-sized, often operate in niche markets and are located in close geographical proximity to each other (3rd on cluster development) and that this fosters the exchange of learning among businesses and facilitates the development of new goods and services.

Despite Germany dropping one place to fifth this year, the country’s score did not drop, coming second only to Finland among the EU countries.

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