The World Economic Forum released its Global Information Technology Report for 2012 earlier this week which saw Pakistan lose 14 places compared to last year to rank at 102nd place out of the possible 142. Meanwhile, Sweden, Singapore and Finland grabbed the top three spots.
The report is organized in ten pillars which are distributed in four sub-indexes namely, Environment, Readiness, Usage and Impact which rank a country on different criteria and identify opportunities and challenges being faced. Unfortunately Pakistan has not been able to make good measurable progress in any of the aforementioned pillars.
The only good place Pakistan got was in the Affordability pillar in which Pakistan was placed at 26. In every other pillar, it ranked around the 100th position.
The Affordability ranking was helped by the fact that Pakistan now boasts the fourth cheapest mobile cellular tariffs out of 142 countries which just goes to show how competitive the market has become. There were also improvements in some other areas like Judicial independence in which Pakistan ranked 62. Other areas in which performance improved were the quality of education system and the capacity for innovation which moved up seven places each to rank at 79 and 51.
The areas in which performance deteriorated were the fixed broadband internet tariffs in which ranking dropped from 36 to 79 compared to last year and the extent of information and communications technologies improving access for all citizens to basic services like health, education, financial services, which dropped a staggering 30 places to 113. The priority the government gives to Information and Communication technology also dropped 20 places to 103rd place.
This report is currently one of the most comprehensive and authoritative international assessment of the impact of ICT on competitiveness and the well-being of nations. It is created by The World Economic Forum which is an independent international organization committed to improving the state of the world by engaging business, political, academic and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and industry agendas.
Mishal Pakistan, the official local partner to the World Economic Forum, claimed that the ranking reflects the lack of efficiency and poor governance on part of the government.
Pakistan dropping so low in the rankings in the space of one year should indeed trigger alarm bells throughout the government. It is clear we are not keeping pace with the rest of the world and a serious effort needs to put in to improve this years position.
If you want to see the complete report, the link to the report is given below: