Sweden, Singapore Top The World Economic Forum Digital Economy List

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Some 6% of the world’s population has access to high speed Internet. (Photo: Ilker)
Some 6% of the world’s population has access to high speed Internet. (Photo: Ilker)

ECONOMY

  • Over 90% of Sweden’s 9.3 million inhabitants use the Internet on a regular basis
  • Singapore’s business-friendly policies, transparent government and quality education system ideal for technology integration
  • Nordic and Asian economies best use information and communications technologies to boost growth

Sweden and Singapore are the leaders in the world’s digital economy, according to a report by the World Economic Forum (WEF).

Finland was ranked 3rd, followed by Switzerland and the United States.

The Global Information Technology Report for 2010 and 2011 placed Nordic and Asian economies at the top of the list of those who have best adopted information and communications technologies (ICT) to boost growth. Denmark was ranked 7th on the list and Norway 9th, with Taiwan and South Korea placed 6th and 10th respectively. Hong Kong also followed closely in 12th place.

Over 90% of Sweden’s 9.3 million inhabitants use the Internet on a regular basis, and ICT improves access to basic services here more than in any other country in the world, according to the WEF report.

Singapore’s business-friendly policies, transparent governance and excellent education system were major factors in it being judged one of the best climates for ICT – second by a negligible hundredth of a point behind Sweden.

Covering 138 countries, the report analyzes the role information technology plays in transforming societies and economies, and creating new economic opportunities.

Key Statistics – Governments Online (source: World Economic Forum)

  • Approximately 2% of countries worldwide do not have a government website
  • Over 83% of the global population does not have broadband Internet access
  • 6% of the world’s population has access to high speed broadband connections

Key Statistics – Sweden’s Economy (source: CIA World Factbook)

  • Population: 9.3 million
  • GDP: $354 billion in 2010 (33rd worldwide)
  • Unemployment & Labor: unemployment rate of 8.3% in 2010; labor force of nearly 5 million in 2010
  • Leading Industries: iron & steel, precision equipment, wood pulp and paper products, processed foods, automobiles

Key Statistics – Singapore’s Economy (source: CIA World Factbook)

  • Population: 4.7 million
  • GDP: $292.4 billion in 2010 (41rd worldwide)
  • Unemployment & Labor: unemployment rate of 2.1% in 2010; labor force of over 3 million in 2010
  • Leading Industries: electronics, chemicals, financial services, oil drilling equipment, petroleum refining, rubber processing and rubber products, processed food and beverages, ship repair, offshore platform construction, life sciences ?

By James Mulholland for
James Mulholland is a Paris-based internet and broadcast journalist specializing in sports, current affairs and technology news, while also freelancing as a photographer.

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