India, being the fastest growing cellular market, has slipped one position to 40th rank in the global Network Readiness Index for 2005-06, according the report published by World Economic Forum (WEF). India was ranked 39th in last year's report.
The report by WEF ranks 112 countries on the basis of their degree of preparedness to participate and benefit from Information, Communication and Technology (ICT) developments. The index is composed of three component indexes that assess the environment for ICT offered by a given country or community, the readiness of the community's key stakeholders such as individuals, business and Governments, and the usage of ICT among these stakeholders. Analysts said that the Indian performance was not improving due to the fact that the growth in telecommunication sector was restricted to urban and semi-urban cities. Countries such as Chile, Cyprus, Tunisia and Thailand are ahead of India in the WEF ranking. The US has taken the top niche as the most wired nation, pushing Singapore to the second place. Experts said that with the Government and private operators embarking on a plan with a thrust on rural sector, India's rankings would improve.