Israel has slipped slightly in global competitiveness rankings, from 26th place in 2012 to 27th, according to the World Economic Forum.
The Forum, which hosts the annual conference of business and political leaders in the Swiss resort of Davos every winter, ranks competitiveness based on several factors, including quality of infrastructure and ability to promote innovation.
Israel came in third for innovation, which considers such indices as the number of patents (sixth place).
Similarly ranked with Israel this year are South Korea, in 26th place, and Ireland, in 28th.
The Forum pointed to Israel’s need to invest more in education, particularly in math and science, which will determine long-term competitiveness.
The Forum rated Switzerland as No. 1 in competitiveness, followed by Singapore, then Finland, all three unchanged in their rank from last year. Germany moved up to fourth from sixth last year.
The United States moved from fifth to seventh place after several years of decline.
Among Middle Eastern countries, Qatar had the highest ranking overall (13th), while the United Arab Emirates as 19th. Saudi Arabia was in 20th place, down two slots from last year. Jordan is in 68th place, and Egypt sank to 118th, for obvious reasons.