By Mustapha Darboe
The Gambia’s ability to retain its own talents is two grades point lower than its capacity to attract talents from elsewhere, says The Global Competitiveness Report published by the World Economic Forum on September 27.
The Gambia which fared better than only 15 countries on the report, scoring 123 out of 138, has been ranked 67th out of 138 in terms of its capacity to retain its talent as oppose to 55 out of the same number on its capacity to attract talent.
The Gambia which also scored 123 in last year’s ranking has fallen behind Senegal which has also dropped in its ranking from 110 to 112 this year.
But in terms of both brain drain and attracting talents, The Gambia fared better than Senegal in the report.
Senegal ranked 85 out of 138 in terms of its capacity to retain talent while it is ranked 65 in its capacity to attract talent.
The key indicators the index looks at are the state institutions, infrastructure, macroeconomic environment, health and primary education and also efficiency enhancers such as higher education and training, goods market efficiency, labour market efficiency, financial market development, technological readiness and market size.
Other indicators are innovation and sophistication factors such as business sophistication and innovation
Nigeria, the economic powerhouse of the region, has fallen two places behind The Gambia at 125th out of the 137 economies the ranking covers. Though this is a slight improvement of the country’s 127th position in last year’s ranking. Sierra Leone ranked 130th and Liberia 134th.
Gambia’s scores on other relevant indicators are as follows: quality of electricity supply 101, government debt % GDP 121, life expectancy years 123, public trust in politicians 44, quality of the education system 40, quality of math and science education 104, quality of management schools 68, total tax rate % profits 125, ease of access to loans 120, soundness of banks 76, internet users % pop. 122, innovation 106 and availability of scientists and engineers 128
The report also ranks in order of importance the most problematic factors for doing business in Gambia which it states as access to financing, foreign currency regulations, tax rates, inflation, inadequate supply of infrastructure, poor work ethic in national labor force, corruption, tax regulations, inefficient government bureaucracy, insufficient capacity to innovate, inadequately educated workforce, policy instability, crime and theft, government instability, poor public health and restrictive labor regulations.
Mauritius and Rwanda, at 45th and 58th positions respectively, are ranked higher than South Africa (61th).
Switzerland maintains its number one spot as the most competitive economy in the world. The 10 most competitive world’s economies are Switzerland, the US, Singapore, the Netherlands, Germany, Hong Kong, Sweden, the UK, Japan, and Finland. The report is produced annually from data obtained from leading international sources.