Business

S'pore 13th in attracting world talent

Living costs and salaries play a big role in attracting talent, an effect bosses in Singapore and Hong Kong can attest to.

A fall in living expenses and higher pay in Singapore have given it a more competitive edge in recruitment this year, while Hong Kong has slipped down the league table owing to higher prices and lower salaries.

Hong Kong is still ahead of Singapore, but the gap has narrowed.

Falling three spots, Hong Kong sits at 12th position, while Singapore rose two notches to 13th place in the ranking compiled by Swiss business school IMD.

The movements for both economies, however, are statistically insignificant and could be accounted for by relative shifts in sentiment, said the director of the IMD World Competitiveness Centre, Dr Arturo Bris.

He noted quite a lot of negative sentiment in Singapore last year about its economic outlook but added: "The mood has improved this year."

Singapore's score in the "appeal" category also improved this year. It takes into account such factors as living cost, quality of life, remuneration of management and services professions as well as personal safety.

The ranking is based on both historical data and surveys with thousands of executives from 63 economies. These also look at two other categories of indicators.

One is readiness, which assesses an economy's ability to nurture skills among its people that match those needed by its economy. The other is investment and development, which delve into, among other things, public spending on education, pupil-teacher ratios and health infrastructure.

The top three competitive countries for talent this year remain unchanged: Switzerland, Denmark and Belgium, in that order.

Employment