For the last 8 years the Global Innovation Index has been annually ranking the innovation performance of over 140 countries, accounting for  95.1% of the world's population. Each country is assessed primarily based on national economic drivers which facilitate innovative activities.  The 2015 report can be viewed here.

Singapore ranked number 7  just behind the likes of the United States (ranked 5) and in front of countries like Germany (ranked 12), Canada (ranked 16), and France (ranked 21).  Singapore was the highest ranked South East Asian/Oceania country followed by Hong Kong  (ranked 11),  Republic of Korea (ranked 14),  Australia  (ranked 17),  and China (ranked 29). 

The key strength areas for which Singapore was ranked No.1 in the report include:

  1. royalty and license fees payments
  2. high and medium-high - tech manufacturing
  3. high tech exports less re-exports
  4. FDI net outflows (%GDP)
  5. business sophistication
  6. tertiary education

The report also recognised the strength of the  increasingly important ASEAN economic region ranking Malaysia 32, and Thailand 55.  Malaysia and Vietnam were mentioned as particular countries which were outperforming their economic peers in terms of innovation. In this regard, Malaysia was commended for their high-tech export market. The Philippines and Vietnam both performed around 18% better in innovation than the previous year. In relation to the top innovators by income group, Malaysia and Vietnam both  ranked 2 (Malaysia for upper middle class and Vietnam for lower middle class).  With specific mention to Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam, the report noted the commitment of these countries to innovation through setting up national innovation agencies.