IMD World Competitiveness Rankings 2018


The 2018 IMD World Competitiveness Rankings (30th edition) benchmarks the performance of 63 economies based on more than 340 criteria measuring different facets of competitiveness. The economies are ranked from the most to the least competitive.

According to the IMD measure of competitiveness, Belgium is ranked 26th (out of 63 countries), a fall of 3 places compared to the previous edition. The top five remain the same as in the previous year, but their order changes. The United States returns to the first spot, followed by Hong Kong, Singapore, the Netherlands and Switzerland. The remaining places in the top 10 are occupied largely by Nordic countries: Denmark, Norway and Sweden rank 6th, 8th and 9th respectively.

The performances of Belgium in sub-factor rankings are the following:

  • Economic performances: 44th, a fall of 21 places from the previous year, principally due to International Investment (57th, a fall of 41 places), International trade (12th, a fall of 4 places), Employment (53rd, a fall of 6 places).

  • Government efficiency: 35th, a fall of 3 places, due to Institutional Framework (21st, a fall of 3 places) and Business legislation (23rd, a fall of 2 places).

  • Business Efficiency: 23rd, an improvement of 3 places, principally due to Productivity and Efficiency (13th, improvement of 2 places), Management practices (27th, an improvement of 4 places)

  • Infrastructure: 20th a fall of 7 places, principally due to Basic Infrastructure (41st, fall of 20 places) and Education (9th, a fall of 7 places).

The Belgium's strengths are (top 20, out of 63 countries):

  • Societal Framework: 7th

  • Education: 9th

  • International Trade: 12th

  • Productivity and Efficiency: 13th

  • Finance: 16th

  • Scientific Infrastructure: 18th.

The Belgium's weaknesses are (last 20 places, out of 63 countries):

  • Public finance: 50th

  • Labor market: 51st

  • Employment: 53th

  • International investment: 57th

  • Tax policy: 62th.