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Korea Ranked 14th in Water Competitiveness

Posted October. 18, 2010 10:41,   


With the incidence of climate change-driven weather abnormalities increasing, Korea ranks 14th in water competitiveness among 20 leading countries in water resource management, a survey said Sunday.

The study was jointly conducted by the Regional Competitiveness Center under the Future Strategy Research Institute of The Dong-A Ilbo and the global consulting company Monitor Group.

Korea was included in the water group of 20 thanks to improvement and investment in a water-related environment, but ranked 17th in safety against national disasters and 16th in response to water shortages.

The U.S. was first with 4.17 out of a maximum five points and Singapore second with 4.05 points.

The survey measured the competitiveness of water resources as a source of future competitiveness to improve quality of living and create economic wealth.

The 20 countries were assessed in three categories: resources (stability of water supply and future responses); the environment (water damage, safety in water quality, and abundance in a water-related environment); and industry (competitiveness in water-related industries and growth potential).

Korea received 3.27 points, lower than the average of 3.47 points for all 20 countries. By category, the country was 15th in resources, 14th in industry, and 12th in environment competitiveness.

The U.S. topped the list thanks to a high quality of living brought about by improvement in water quality and the environment, through continuous investment of water-related infrastructure and global companies in water-related material parts and service industries, such as General Electric and IBM. The U.S. ranked 10th, however, in competiveness of water resources.

Singapore lacks water resources and imports water from Malaysia, but came in second for nurturing related infrastructure and industries.

In Europe, Britain (third with 3.89 points), Germany (fifth with 3.82 points), the Netherlands (sixth with 3.81 points), and France (seventh with 3.79 points) were included in the upper tier of the rankings.

In Asia, Japan finished eighth with 3.73 points for its superb competitiveness in the water industry. China, which is making significant investment in water-related infrastructure, ranked 16th (3.11 points) due to a shortage of water resources and low environment competitiveness.

Countries that had suffered mild or severe water shortages due to geographical constraints also saw rapid progress in water resources. Australia, which suffered severe droughts in the 2000s, ranked fourth with 3.83 points thanks to large-scale investment in water resources-related infrastructure.

In the Middle East, Israel ranked 12th (3.44 points), two notches higher than Korea.