The latest world Information and Communication Technology (ICT) rankings prepared by the World Economic Forum (WEF) and the international graduate business school and research institution, Institute europen administration des affaires (INSEAD) ranks Ghana at the 99th position out of 138 economies in the world.
Ghana’s ranking in the report The Global Information Technology Report which was released this month April 2011, shows that the country dropped by one place from the last rankings in 2009-2010 which was 98. Out of the overall mark of 10, Ghana scored 3.4 in the year under review as against 3.3 in 2009-2010.
As compared to 2009-2010 report which captured 133 economies, the 2010-2011 had 138 economies the highest since the report started in 2001. The report, which shows a country’s Networked Readiness Index (NRI) said the environmental component in Ghana was ranked at the 82th position. The component includes market, political and regulatory as well as infrastructure environments.
ICT usage in the country is still far below international best practices, especially at the government level. The report ranks Ghana 108 on individual usage scoring 2.5, business usage ranks 102 with a score of 2.7 and government usage at 116 with a score of 2.8 all out of seven points.
Out of seven marks, the report said Ghana’s effectiveness of law-making bodies and laws relating to ICT scored 4.4 and 3.0 respectively.
The report revealed that information on software piracy rate and percentages of software installation were not available.
There was high level of competition in internet and telephony with the country scoring four out six points.
In Ghana, ICT micro-enterprises have played an important role in extending connectivity to remote areas not well covered by the established operators but however, ICT micro-enterprises are exposed to volatility and risk, and returns on investment are often low, forcing entrepreneurs to draw on other sources of income as well, it said.
In Sub-Saharan Africa, the assessment of networked readiness continues to be disappointing, with the majority of the region lagging in the bottom half of the NRI rankings, the report indicates.
Even though ICT penetration rates have soared in the region over recent years, boosted by mobile telephony, and many countries have started to leverage more and more ICT to improve efficiency and reach out more and more to citizens, sub-Saharan Africa does not seem to have progressed as much and as fast as other areas of the world.
It added: Underdeveloped infrastructure, inefficient markets, opaque regulatory environments, inadequate educational standards, and widespread poverty are powerful obstacles against a more extensive and efficient use of new technologies for increased development and prosperity in the region.
Mauritius was ranked first in sub-Sahara Africa followed by South Africa in the region.
Sweden topped the rankings for the second time in a row, with an outstanding performance across board with Singapore placing second followed by Finland, Switzerland, and the United States.