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          "Of course, to achieve a higher ranking, we have to work on our weaknesses. We will address our weaknesses through science and technology," dela Pena told the Philippine News Agency (PNA).

          The GII is a ranking of world economies based on innovative capabilities. Here, the innovation inputs and outputs are being considered, he described.

          The latest GII result was released on Wednesday night. The Philippines rose to number 54 in ranking, up 19 notches from its previous ranking of 73 in 2018 and 2017.

          GII ranks seven pillars: Institutions, Human capital and research, Infrastructure, Business sophistication, Market sophistication, Knowledge and technology outputs, and Creative outputs.

          Except for the market sophistication area, the Philippines had high scores in the six other pillars, above the average of the lower middle-income group.

          Market sophistication refers to credit investments, according to Dela Pena.

          He said GII results bared the country's biggest weakness is on market sophistication, as it ranked 110 in this area.

          Under market sophistication, the Philippines ranked low in sub-pillars such Credit (126) and Investment (118), Ease of getting credit (128), Microfinance gross loans (76), and Venture capital deals (68).

          The DOST chief, however, noted that compared to other economies in the Southeast Asia, East Asia, and Oceania region, the Philippines performed above average in knowledge and technology outputs.

          The Philippines ranks in the top 25 in the following areas: trade, competition and market scale, knowledge absorption, and knowledge diffusion.

          The DOST's main strategy, he said, is its Science for Change Program (S4CP).

          This program identifies the areas that need an enhanced research and development investments and innovations.

          Collaboration with higher education institutions, especially in the regions, is also part of this program. (PNA)

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