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Taiwan remains 3rd in Asia in talent competitiveness

09/23/2023 09:15 PM
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Members of the general public walk around the neighborhood of Taiwan
Members of the general public walk around the neighborhood of Taiwan's landmark, the Taipei 101. CNA file photo

Taipei, Sept. 23 (CNA) Taiwan has again ranked third in Asia in the IMD 2023 World Talent Ranking, which measures the availability of workers with needed skills and the quality of local talent, coming behind Singapore and Hong Kong.

The IMD World Talent Report published Thursday by Swiss-based International Institute for Management Development (IMD) ranked Taiwan No. 20 among the 64 economies evaluated, which was a drop by one place from No. 19 last year and four places from No. 16 in 2021.

Among Asian economies, Taiwan ranked third place after Singapore's eighth position and Hong Kong's 16th.

According to the IMD report, the results show "the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the talent competitiveness landscape" as many regions, including East Asia, "still display lower talent competitiveness in 2023 than in 2019."

Taiwan's National Development Council (NDC) said the IMD also reported a downturn in business confidence in some economies due to the relatively depressed world economic climate, which has resulted in sharper shifts in rankings.

IMD's World Talent ranking measures factors including "investment and development," "appeal," and "readiness," in which Taiwan is ranked 23rd, 21st, and 19th, respectively.

In the "appeal" category, or the extent to which a country is appealing to or able to tap into the overseas talent pool, Taiwan is up from last year's 25th to 21st place this year. Of the 11 sub-factors in "appeal," Taiwan is especially strong in "worker motivation" in which it is ranked fourth in the world.

The NDC said this shows the positive effect of the policies introduced during the Covid-19 pandemic that worked to keep companies active and to keep talents in the country.

Among the12 sub-factors under "readiness," or the availability of skills and competencies in the local talent pool, Taiwan's advantages are in "graduates in sciences" and "educational assessment - PISA," in which it is placed in the seventh and eighth places, in the economies considered, respectively.

According to the NDC, this reflects the efforts that have been put into training local talents, expanding STEM departments, and setting up interdisciplinary digital technology programs.

What requires further attention, however, are sub-factors such as "skilled labor," "international experience" of senior managers, and "language skills" that meet the needs of enterprises, according to the NDC. Taiwan saw major declines in these categories compared to last year, falling by 10, 13 and 10 places, respectively.

In the "investment and development" category, Taiwan is ranked second in terms of "health infrastructure" and seventh in "employee training."

The NDC said there remains plenty of room for improvement of Taiwan's talent readiness in a globalized world and in an era of digital transition.

Toward that end, the government's Bilingual 2030 policy has been gradually implemented and research institutes in key fields and regional technical training bases have been established. They are aimed at meeting the needs of industrial development and preparing locally trained talents for the world market, the council stressed.

The NDC said that in the face of a reshuffle in the global supply chain, the global economic downturn and inflation, Taiwan's position in the world talent ranking is witnessing a slight slip,

The government will continue upgrading the six core strategic industries - information and digital industries, cybersecurity, precision health, green and renewable energy, national defense and strategic industries, and strategic stockpile - and enhancing the quality and quantity of Taiwan's local and foreign talents with policies aiming to attract foreign professionals and keep foreign students who graduate from local schools in the local workforce, the council said.

(By Pan Tzu-yu and Alison Hsiao)


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