World competitiveness yearbook 2007: Australia country profile

Economic indicators Foreign investment Competition Australia

The latest edition of the world's leading competitiveness survey shows Australia's economic infrastructure continues to perform poorly relative to most other areas of the economy.

The World Competitiveness Yearbook 2007, released in Australia by CEDA, has underlined Australia's long-term challenge to build the foundations of economic growth, including:

1. reforming the education system to promote higher education and skills attainment.
2. boosting investment in hard infrastructure including water, energy and transport networks.

Of 55 national economies, Australia ranks 12th overall in 2007, down from sixth in 2006. However, these results are distorted by the 2005 change in domicile of News Corporation from Australia to the US. News Corporation's move led to a one-off fall in Australia's international investment and economic performance rankings. CEDA and the IMD agree that Australia's 2007 ranking has been distorted by this change.

Highlights from the 10 greatest improvements in the overall performance of the economy include:

1. Energy intensity - commercial energy consumed for each dollar of GDP fell from 11,559 to 9,120 kilojoules.

2. Long term unemployment - as a percentage of labour force, dropped from 1.14 to 0.9 per cent.

3. Exports of goods - rose in dollar value from US$ 106.21bn to US$ 123.28bn, and as percentage of GDP from 14.94 per cent to 16.31 per cent.

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