Switzerland has been ranked as the second most attractive economic location in the world in the IMD World Competitiveness Ranking 2024. The country has gained a place in comparison with the previous year. Since 2020, Switzerland has never been ranked outside the top three and even topped the charts in 2021. This year, Singapore leads the way, having improved by three places year on year overall. Denmark, which was the top-ranked nation last year, has fallen to third place, ahead of Ireland (-2), Hong Kong (+2) and Sweden (+2). Germany is ranked in 24th place, down two positions against last year. This is the same decline suffered by Austria, which is now ranked in 26th place.

The IMD World Competitiveness Center (WCC) has been publishing this ranking for 36 years. The WCC is part of the IMD, a private business based in both Lausanne in Switzerland, and Singapore. For their evaluations, the researchers apply 164 statistical indicators sub-divided into four main categories: economic performance, infrastructure government efficiency and business efficiency.

In terms of infrastructure, Switzerland is in first place for the fourth year in a row, while it is ranked top for government efficiency for the third consecutive year. Moreover, the nation has continually improved in both of the other two categories. Regarding economic performance, it has moved from 30th place in 2022, to 18th place last year, before securing 12th position in this year’s ranking. For business efficiency, Switzerland has improved from 7th place last year to 5th place. The only subcategory in which Switzerland performs worse in comparison with the prior year is in relation to prices (-5)

As far as the challenges facing Switzerland are concerned, the WCC cites aspects such as ensuring a secure and cost-effective supply of electricity and an efficient decarbonization process. Switzerland should look to also exploit its workforce potential and facilitate access for qualified workers. Moreover, the country should look to expand and diversify market access, in addition to bolstering competitive dynamics, according to the report. The WCC also recommends removing barriers from entrepreneurial activities and strengthening innovation. Last but not least, the WCC argues that the pension system must be sustainably financed and the tax system optimized.