MANILA – The Philippines ranked 59th in the 2022 Global Innovation Index (GII), performing best in business sophistication, based on the World Intellectual Property Organization's (WIPO) report published on Thursday.

The WIPO also recognized the Philippines as one of the middle-income economies with the fastest innovation catch-up to date along with China, India, Iran, and Vietnam, despite sliding eight notches from last year's ranking down to 59th among 132 countries.

The Philippines, however, "fell back slightly, underlining the importance of sustaining innovation effort over time," the report added.

The GII added that the country's weakest performance is in institutions.

In a statement, Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Secretary Renato Solidum Jr. said the agency is fully committed to driving the local industry to succeed through investments in science and technology facilities and laboratory networks to support the local industry's productivity.

DOST Assistant Secretary Leah Buendia, meanwhile, said they continue to capitalize on their strengths and increasing capacity in industry 4.0 technologies.

"DOST funded R&D (research and development) facilities and laboratories with an active nationwide network for the development of industry and programs for digitalization, sustain the industry’s efforts for a more streamlined and efficient process,” Buendia said.

This year, the Philippines ranked 5th among the 36 lower-middle-income group economies, a notch down compared to the 2021 ranking.

The country has maintained being 11th among 17 economies in South East Asia, East Asia, and Oceania.

The Philippines’ Innovation Inputs dipped from 72 in 2021 to 76 in 2022 and Innovation Outputs from 40 in 2021 to 51 in 2022.

According to the DOST, the lower rank in 2022 was largely due to decreased performance scores in Knowledge and Technology Outputs which are mainly a function of knowledge creation, knowledge impact, and knowledge diffusion.

GII ranks world economies based on innovative capabilities, and also considers the countries' innovation inputs and outputs.

According to WIPO, the GII tracks the most recent global innovation trends against the background of the coronavirus pandemic, slowing productivity growth, and other evolving challenges. (PNA)