NZ lags behind Latvia in new IT report

New Zealand's market environment ranks behind Tunisia, Chile and Latvia in a new global IT survey.

New Zealand's market environment ranks behind Tunisia, Chile and Latvia according to a new global IT survey.

The Global Information Technology Report, issued by the World Economic Forum (WEF), shows New Zealand is ranked seventh in Asia-Pacific, and 23rd in the world. The country enjoys good infrastructure (8th in the world) and a good political and regulatory environment (12th) but its market environment (33rd) is ranked behind Tunisia, Chile and Latvia.

Singapore ranks first in Asia-Pacific and second worldwide after the US in the report, which ranks 102 countries and territories by how well prepared they are "to participate in and benefit from information and communication technology (ICT) developments."

Three components — economic and regulatory environment, readiness and usage — go into determining a country's overall readiness. These are further broken down into a total of 48 sub-categories including the market environment, infrastructure, education, cost of internet and telephone access, and level of usage among consumers, business and government.

Singapore emerges just behind the US in the overall rankings, and is ranked best in the world for government use of technology, overall infrastructure and affordability of telecommunications. The country's score was dragged down by individual consumers' relative lack of readiness to use ICT (22nd in the world) and actual use of ICT (18th).

Second in the region and ninth overall is Australia, which scored highly for its infrastructure (6th), business use of ICT (3rd) and individual readiness to use ICT (6th), but less well on actual usage by government (20th) and the market environment (21st), which includes factors such as the import/export environment, the skilled labour pool and availability of funding.

In 12th place overall, and third in Asia-Pacific, is Japan. Japan is marked down because of relatively poor infrastructure (ranked 21st in the world) and its political and regulatory environment, which is ranked 37th, behind such digital unknowns as Botswana and Gambia. Japanese business readiness to use ICT was highly rated (6th).

Taiwan, Hong Kong and South Korea are locked together in the next three places, although the ICT profiles of the three markets are very different.

Taiwan has excellent ICT market conditions (6th) and government use of ICT (6th), but relatively poor individual use of ICT (27th). Hong Kong has good political and regulatory environment (2nd, behind Finland), but a lack of readiness, particularly in the government (27th) and business (31st) sectors, to adopt ICT.

South Korea's infrastructure is highly rated (8th), but its overall score was held down by the political and regulatory environment (25th) and business readiness to adopt ICT (23rd). Readiness includes factors such as the presence of necessary skills to leverage ICT, plus access and affordability.

Malaysia ranks 26th in the world on the strength of its government's commitment to ICT. The government's readiness to use ICT (6th) and its actual use (7th) are in contrast to business readiness (38th) and individual readiness (47th).

Other Asian countries ranked include:

— Thailand, overall ranking 38th. Best aspect: government readiness to use ICT (22nd) Worst aspect: Infrastructure (54th)

— India, overall ranking 45th. Best aspect: government use of ICT (26th). Worst aspect: Business use of ICT (89th).

— China, overall ranking 51st. Best aspect: government use of ICT (21st). Worst aspect: Infrastructure (72nd).

— Vietnam, overall ranking 68th. Best aspect: market environment (38th). Worst aspect: Infrastructure (92nd)

— Philippines, overall ranking 69th. Best aspect: government use of ICT (29th) Worst aspect: Infrastructure (94th)

— Indonesia, overall ranking 73rd. Best aspect: market environment (50th) Worst aspect: Business use of ICT (89th)

The World Economic Forum's Global Information Technology Report can be found here.

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