Denmark, Sweden top US in new global IT report

March 26, 2009 By BRADLEY S. KLAPPER , Associated Press Writer

(AP) -- Denmark and Sweden are better than the United States in their ability to exploit information and communications technology, according to a survey published Thursday.

The , which topped the World Economic Forum's "" in 2006 before slipping down the rankings, climbed one place to third in the latest edition of the survey.

The study largely blamed poor political and regulatory environments in the United States for offsetting some of the benefits of having the world's most competitive economy.

The index, which measures the range of factors that affect a country's ability to harness information technologies for and development, also cited America's low rate of mobile phone usage, a lack of government leadership in information technology and the low quality of mathematics and science education.

Still, even in the midst of an , the report indicated the United States was well placed for a technology-driven recovery as it has the top scientific research institutions in the world and best collaboration between universities and industries.

Singapore, the top Asian country, and Switzerland rounded out the top 5. Nordic nations Finland, Iceland and Norway followed, with Netherlands and Canada completing the top 10.

China jumped 11 spots to No. 46, leading the group of big emerging economies. India was 54th, five places ahead of Brazil, while Russia was down at No. 74.

The report covered 134 countries, with Chad, East Timor, Zimbabwe, Burundi and Bangladesh at the bottom.

©2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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