Ireland loses top spot in globalisation rankings
But tax breaks still attractive to business, says Ernst & Young
Published 29/01/2010 | 05:00
IRELAND is the world's third most globalised nation -- although it had been number one at the start of the decade, according to a report released at the World Economic Forum in Davos yesterday.
Ireland still holds the record for the country which "globalised" the most between 1995 and 2008, according to Ernst & Young's 'Globalisation and the Changing World of Business', prepared in collaboration with the Economist Intelligence Unit.
The 10 most globalised economies according to the report are Singapore, Hong Kong, Ireland, Belgium, Sweden, Denmark, Switzerland, The Netherlands, Israel and Finland. The UK is in 15th position, the US in 24th and China 40th.
The index measures the relative level of global involvement of a country, but not its impact on global commerce or the global economy.
"In recent years, Ireland has positioned itself as a hub in the global exchange of technology, as a result of its safe operating environment and educated workforce.
"It may not be the originator of all the innovation that passes through its doors, but the country's role as a conduit for research and development, through manufacture, packaging and exports, has been an important contributor to its high level of globalisation," the report says.
It finds that the fastest "deglobalisers" since 1995 are Venezuela, Azerbaijan, Indonesia, Argentina and Malaysia.
The report says the financial and economic crisis has called assumptions about the growth of globalisation into question.
Mike McKerr, senior partner with Ernst & Young in Ireland, said the fall in Irish exports appears modest relative to other countries.
"Ireland still remains an extremely attractive location due to the same corporate tax advantages that existed during the Celtic Tiger boom years, alongside a strongly educated workforce and a much improved infrastructure," he said.
The country's image was helped by the willingness of Irish people to work and settle down abroad but as Irish companies increase their presence in international markets, "the need for culturally diverse management also becomes all the more pressing."