Singapore to be among top tech-ready economies in world: Study

Singapore is poised to be one of the most technologically ready economies over the next few years, alongside Australia and Sweden, a new study by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) has found.

Preparing For Disruption: Technological Readiness Ranking, the new report released yesterday, looked at 82 of the world's largest economies and focused on how future-oriented these business environments are.

Three key elements of the ranking include: access to the Internet; the digital economy infrastructure; as well as openness to innovation.

Another key finding of the study is that government investment will drive a broad-based improvement in countries' tech readiness in the next five years.

Specifically, spending on e-government, cyber security and a robust e-commerce environment will increasingly be seen as a policy priority, the EIU said.

China has seen strong growth in its patent applications in recent years. Nonetheless, based on EIU's measure of patent grants as a proxy for innovation, the US is the front runner.

The previous ranking from 2013 to last year saw Finland and Sweden securing top spots, while the US and France join the top 10 countries in the latest ranking, as Libya and Angola retain the lowest positions.

The top-scoring countries in the Online Service Index of E-government include Australia, Singapore, Britain and Canada. One of the main drivers of e-government strategies in Asia Pacific is the desire to reduce corruption.

The top-scoring countries on the metric for cyber security preparedness include Australia, Singapore, Canada and the US.

The EIU said patented inventions are not enough to boost the productive capacity of an economy or foster an innovative business culture.

Innovation clusters, such as Singapore, that have closely linked businesses, suppliers, financing and research institutions in one place punch far above their weight. - THE STRAITS TIMES