Innovative competition
Switzerland topped the list of most competitive economies iStock

The UK has lost its spot as the ninth most competitive economy in the world after it dropped one place to tenth, according to a study by the World Economic Forum. The WEF Global Competitiveness Index showed Sweden overtook the UK to reach ninth place, while Switzerland tops the chart and Singapore is second.

According to the WEF, strong innovation and sophistication of companies led to an improved place in the index for Sweden, which was tenth in 2014.

"Today's figures show that the UK remains one of the top 10 best places in the world to start and grow a business," a government spokeswoman from the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills. "Our economy is growing faster than any other G7 nation and we are the top destination for inward investment in Europe. Our focus is firmly fixed on increasing productivity."

In terms of productivity, the WEF said the global economy is harmed by the authorities' failure to boost productivity and give entrepreneurial talent more freedom.

Some European countries with weaker economies were singled out by the WEF for making "significant strides in bolstering competitiveness". It said: "Thanks to reform packages aimed at improving the functioning of markets, Spain and Italy climb two and six places respectively. Similar improvements in the product and labour market in France and Portugal are outweighed by a weakening performance in other areas."

Unsurprisingly, Greece was the lowest listed developed economy, in 81st place. However, the WEF said the country's ranking was based on data collected before the signing of the bailout deal. Meanwhile, emerging markets are failing to climb up on the competitiveness ranking.

Here are the top 30 most competitive economies in the world right now, based on data provided by WEF.

  1. Switzerland
  2. Singapore
  3. United States
  4. Germany
  5. Netherlands
  6. Japan
  7. Hong Kong SAR
  8. Finland
  9. Sweden
  10. United Kingdom
  11. Norway
  12. Denmark
  13. Canada
  14. Qatar
  15. Taiwan, China
  16. New Zealand
  17. United Arab Emirates
  18. Malaysia
  19. Belgium
  20. Luxembourg
  21. Australia
  22. France
  23. Austria
  24. Ireland
  25. Saudi Arabia
  26. Korea, Rep
  27. Israel
  28. China
  29. Iceland
  30. Estonia