"Our reliance on GDP [gross domestic product] of national economic achievement is fuelling short-termism and inequality, and leaders must urgently move to a new model of inclusive growth and development", according to the WEF report, published on Monday, on the eve of the four-day gathering in the Swiss ski resort.
In the current report, Azerbaijan received 4.69 points out of seven possible.
The high ranking was driving by a solid performance in growth and development, as well as intergenerational equity and sustainability, according to the report. In the list of advanced economies, Norway is on the top followed by Ireland, Luxembourg, Switzerland, and Denmark who have also made to top five.
Last year, India was ranked at 60th place among 79 developing economies against China's 15th and Pakistan's 52nd position.This year, Lithuania is ranked the world's most inclusive emerging economy, while Norway tops the advanced economy list. Small European economies dominate the top of the index, with Australia (9) the only non-European economy in the top 10. Other countries include Germany (12) ranks the highest. It is followed by Canada, France, the United Kingdom, the US, Japan and Italy.
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IDI data suggest that relatively strong GDP growth can not be relied upon by itself to generate inclusive socio-economic progress and rising median living standards.
The Forum's Inclusive Development Index 2018 measures progress of 103 economies towards this goal. China is in the 26th position. Although China ranks first among emerging economies in GDP per capita growth (6.8%) and labour productivity growth (6.7%) since 2012, its overall score is brought down by lacklustre performance on Inclusion.
Out of all the advanced economies, the country recorded the largest improvement in its public-debt level, decreasing its public debt by 43pc over the past five years, on the back of what the report described as "a favourable business climate". A majority, 16 of 29, have seen Inclusion deteriorate, and the remaining three have remained stable.
Emerging -country data show a similar disconnect between GDP growth and Inclusion. For the region's emerging markets, the highest placed is Malaysia on 13 out of 74 economies, followed by Thailand on 17. Overall, it reiterated that growth is a necessary but not sufficient condition for robustly rising median living standards. "Most citizens don't really judge the economy on whether GDP is going up or down". Policy-makers need a new dashboard focused more specifically on this goal.