Taiwan’s competitive features have been key to its success in managing COVID-19, according to the 2020 special edition of the Global Competitiveness Report issued by Geneva-based World Economic Forum Dec. 16.
Coronavirus has created profound economic and social consequences around the world while exposing the inadequacies of existing infrastructure and policies such as welfare systems and health care, WEF said.
The report identified four common features that are helping countries better manage COVID-19 and paving the way for revival and transformation in the post-pandemic era: economic digitalization and digital skills; safety nets and financial soundness; governance and planning; and health system and research capability.
According to WEF, at a time when many countries and territories are coping with full lockdowns or reduced business activity, economies like Taiwan’s that feature strong financial systems have been able to easily find sources of credit for small and medium-sized enterprises, which has helped firms survive the downturn.
The report also identified Taiwan as offering widespread, easy access to health care and medical support. This was backed by previous experience fighting epidemics such as SARS, meaning effective protocols were already in place for containing highly infectious respiratory diseases, WEF said.
Launched in 1979 by WEF, the Global Competitiveness Report provides an annual assessment of the drivers of productivity and economic growth. Taiwan ranked 12th among 141 economies in the 2019 edition, with this year’s rankings suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic. (SFC-E)