Agência para o Investimento e Comércio Externo de Portugal


Skilled labour, opportunity cost and stability of infrastructures are cited as the factors that make the Portuguese economy more attractive.

After a fall in 2019, Portugal rose in the global competitiveness ranking of IMD World Competitiveness Center, which is led by Singapore. It was a two-place rise over last year and now stands at 37th place. This is the best result achieved by the country since 2018.


The qualified labour force, the opportunity cost and the stability of infrastructures remain the factors that make the national economy “more attractive,” says the Porto Business School, IMD’s partner in the elaboration of this ranking, which evaluates the economic performance, infrastructure, government efficiency and business efficiency, in a statement.


The improvement in the country’s position was “influenced by consumer price inflation, product exports and tourism revenues”. As far as economic performance is concerned, Portugal stands out in the price category, in which it is the 30th most competitive country in the world, followed by foreign trade (31st place).


The “weak points” that harm national competitiveness are related to public policies, in terms of tax policy, as well as companies, in terms of management practices, points out Daniel Bessa, economist and former dean of Porto Business School, cited in a statement.


In addition, “they also help very little, now in terms of the global economic environment, the very low levels of both savings and investment, resulting in a very low expectation of future economic growth,” he points out.


Looking at the ranking, Singapore continued to be in the list’s top, with Denmark and Switzerland completing the podium. Last year, second and third place went to Hong Kong and the United States, which recorded a “significant drop”, remaining in the top 10 of the most competitive countries.

The small economies, particularly in northern Europe, are gaining more prominence among the most competitive countries, which can be seen with the changes at the top of the list. On the other hand, there are downturns in the major economic powers. The United States, for example, has fallen from third to tenth, while China has moved from 14th to 20th.


See the top-10:

  1. Singapore
  2. Denmark
  3. Switzerland
  4. Netherlands
  5. Hong Kong
  6. Sweden
  7. Norway
  8. Canada
  9. United Arab Emirates
  10. United States of America