Most countries in the top ten in 2014 maintained their ranking this year. Notable changes include Finland, which dropped four ranks to eighth place, and Netherlands, which rose three levels to fifth place, bolstered by its education and infrastructure sectors. However, the U.K. fell to tenth place from ninth.
WEF said the U.K. has helped develop London as the "epicenter of the European tech and start-up scene," with a talented workforce. However, WEF labeled the U.K. government's high deficit and the public debt as problem areas.
It added that a weaker euro – helped by the European Central Bank's decision to start quantitative easing this Spring – and a drop in energy prices has helped offset these concerns about sluggish growth in the euro zone.
China has been another hot topic in recent months, with financial markets reaching volatile extremes over concerns about the country's economic outlook. Despite this turbulence, the country managed to retain its WEF competiveness ranking of 28th place.
At the other end of the ranking, 15 of the 20 worst performing countries were from Sub-Saharan Africa, including Sierra Leone, Chad and Guinea at the bottom.