In this article, we will discuss the top 20 information technology countries in the world. However, if you want to go straight to the top five countries, you can look at the Top 5 Information Technology Countries in the World.
Information technology (IT) runs the world. This technology is essential for almost every aspect of modern life and business. For example, it provides technical support for business operations, solves complex business concerns, enables easier and data-driven decision-making, facilitates collaboration and communication, increases efficiency and productivity, and, most importantly, fosters creativity and innovation.
No wonder the value of the global IT market has seen robust growth since the early 2000s, and experts agree that it will continue to grow tremendously. For example, a MENAFN study determined that the global IT market was worth $8.179 trillion in 2022 and would reach $8.852 trillion in 2023, implying an 8.2% compound annual growth rate (CAGR). Furthermore, MENAFN anticipates the market value to expand at a 9% CAGR between 2023 and 2025 to reach $11.866 trillion.
In the early 2000s, the global IT market derived much of the growth momentum from the internet boom. The internet spread like wildfire as the worldwide demand for IT products and services exploded. Sales of personal computers, networking equipment, e-commerce platforms, servers, web development, and software grew exponentially as governments and private sector players raced to become competitive and implement efficient operations. In fact, a Brookings Institution report asserts that the internet boom powered the global IT market to grow at an average annual rate of 10.4% between 1995 and 2004. But with the dot-com bubble and buts and the widening digital divide, the internet could no longer sustain the global IT market; something else had to come up.
The global IT market was back into the sharp growth trajectory in the 2010s, riding on the back of new technologies like cloud computing, artificial intelligence (AI), big data and analytics, and the Internet of Things (IoT). For example, big technology companies like Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN), Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT), Alphabet Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOGL), and Oracle Corporation (NYSE:ORCL) invested heavily in cloud computing technologies, leading to an explosive growth in value. According to a Gartner report, the global public cloud services market will expand 23.1% in 2023 to reach $332.3 billion. Much of the growth will come from the market’s many benefits, including cost-efficiency, innovation, security, flexibility, and scalability.
However, the benefits of this critical market have not been distributed equally across the world. Some top information technology countries in the world have seen their gross domestic product (GDP) expand tremendously as their companies spread their wings to far-off places to offer IT products and services. For example, a Statista analysis established that only seven countries control 72.4% of the global IT market as of 2022. What is more interesting is the fact that these top information technology countries claimed only 66.4% of this market in 2012. This is sufficient evidence that the information technology industry is big in only a few countries. But the question is: what are these countries? This article has the answers, so read on.
After extensive research and consultations, we developed the criteria for choosing the candidates for the list of the top 20 IT countries in the world. We started by selecting the world’s most technologically advanced countries. We defined a technologically advanced country as one that has a high quality of life, a developed economy, and advanced technological infrastructure relative to other less industrialized nations. This is also the definition used by Global Finance Magazine, which provides an annual ranking of the most technologically advanced countries in the world. Next, we ranked the countries based on the adoption and usage of IT solutions and applications. For this phase, we relied on World Bank’s Digital Adoption Index. Lastly, we ranked the countries based on the BECH Index 2022. The BECH Index ranks the countries according to their potential for selling B2B IT products and services. The higher the index, the more demand there is for such products and services in that country. For example, a country whose share of the index is high implies that it has a higher potential for selling B2B IT products and services than a country whose share is low. The index is based on factors such as population size, GDP per capita, internet penetration, and IT spending.
Top Information Technology Countries in the World
Share of The BECH Index 2022: 0.93%
Egypt’s ICT sector is very robust and thriving. It is the fastest-growing sector in the country’s economy, reaching a growth rate of about 16% in the fiscal year 2020/2021. Its contribution to the GDP has increased to 5% in the fiscal year 2020/2021 compared to 4.4% in 2019/2020. Total investments in the sector in 2020/2021 have reached almost $3 billion. The industry offers wider opportunities for investors in outsourcing, electronics design and manufacturing, and technology parks. The sector also aims to enhance its digital exports, which grew from $4.1 billion in 2019/2020 to $4.5 billion in 2020/2021. The government is undertaking a series of initiatives to support the digital transformation of core government services and build the capacity of young Egyptians and SMEs in ICT skills.
Share of The BECH Index 2022: 0.94%
The sector is a relatively small but growing part of Iran’s economy. According to a World Bank report, the sector accounted for only 2.3% of the country’s GDP in 2019, while the economy’s most significant sector is services, which account for 51 percent of GDP. Nevertheless, the government has launched initiatives to support the ICT sector, such as developing technology parks, promoting e-government services, and training young people in ICT skills.
Share of The BECH Index 2022: 0.99%
The sector is growing fast in Australia. According to a report by PwC, the industry contributed AUD167 billion to the economy in 2020, an increase of 79% since 2016. Additionally, its contribution to GDP was 4.6% in 2015, outpacing the average growth of other industries by more than four times. The sector also has strong export potential, as Australia is home to many innovative and successful ICT companies and projects. According to Austrade, the market capitalization of the ASX information technology index grew over 120% between June 2019 and June 2021. The sector also benefits from a highly skilled and diverse workforce, a supportive government policy environment, and a vibrant startup ecosystem.
17. Saudi Arabia
Share of The BECH Index 2022: 1.25%
Saudi Arabia’s ICT sector is a vital and growing part of the Saudi economy, especially in line with the Vision 2030 plan for economic diversification and digital transformation. According to the US International Trade Administration (ITA), the sector was valued at $32.1 billion in 2021 and is expected to grow by 2.3% in 2022 to reach almost $33 billion. Its contribution to GDP was 3.6% in 2017 and is projected to increase to 4.6% by 2023. Various factors, such as government initiatives and investments in digital infrastructure, cloud computing, data centers, artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, e-commerce, e-government, smart cities, and IoT networks, drive growth in the sector.
Share of The BECH Index 2022: 1.36%
According to Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada, the country’s ICT sector posted revenue of CAD242 billion in 2021, an increase of 4.7% from 2020. The sector’s contribution to GDP was CAD104.5 billion (in 2012 constant dollars), accounting for 5.3% of GDP and 15.3% of GDP growth between 2016 and 2021. The sector also employs over 717,000 workers, with an average salary of CAD$89,630, 52.5% higher than the Canadian average. The industry comprises four sub-sectors: software and computer services, communications services, ICT wholesaling, and manufacturing. Software and computer services are the largest and fastest-growing sub-sector, with a revenue of CAD$106.3 billion and a growth rate of 9.9% in 2021. The sector also invests heavily in research and development, spending over $10 billion in 2021. Key trends and opportunities in the industry include digital transformation, cloud computing, cybersecurity, artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, and e-commerce. Canada ranks 16th in our list of the top information technology countries in the world.
Share of The BECH Index 2022: 1.38%
The US ITA estimates that Spain’s ICT sector’s revenue was $32.1 billion in 2020 and grew by 2.3% in 2022. The sector’s contribution to GDP was 3.2% in 2019, according to Statista. Additionally, it involves over 30,000 companies, mainly concentrated in Madrid and Catalonia regions. The sector comprises four sub-sectors: telecommunications equipment, cybersecurity, cloud computing, and artificial intelligence. Telecommunications equipment is the largest and most mature sub-sector, with a strong demand for 5G network upgrades and fiber optic expansion. Cybersecurity is a fast-growing sub-sector driven by the increased need for data protection and remote work solutions. Cloud computing is also a fast-growing sub-sector, with a high adoption rate among Spanish companies and public administrations. Finally, artificial intelligence is an emerging sub-sector, with various public-private collaboration programs to integrate AI technologies into different vertical sectors. Some key opportunities and challenges in the industry include digital transformation, e-commerce, smart cities, data localization, and talent development.
Share of The BECH Index 2022: 1.60%
Turkey’s ICT market totaled $26.9 billion in 2020, with $17 billion spent on communication technologies and $9.9 billion on information technologies. The sector employs approximately 158,000 people and exported $1.3 billion in related products and services in 2019. It posted an average growth of 23% in the past five years, contributing to 3.2% of the country’s GDP. The sector has attracted over $19 billion worth of international investments since the early 2000s and has over 2,000 active companies. It receives support from various government initiatives and incentives, such as the Digital Strategy 2025, the R&D Law, and the Recovery and Resilience Plan.
13. South Korea
Share of The BECH Index 2022: 1.61%
The sector accounted for 11.9% of GDP in 2014. According to Statista, the market size expanded to around 525 trillion South Korean won (about $447 billion) in 2021, up from about 479 trillion South Korean won the previous year. The sector covers many products and services, such as cloud computing, artificial intelligence, big data, the Internet of Things, e-commerce, cybersecurity, smart cities, and e-government. According to GlobalData, the sector is segmented into four main categories: software and services, hardware, communications equipment, and telecom services. Among these categories, software, and services is the largest segment, with 48.8% in 2020, followed by telecom services with 30.9%.
Share of The BECH Index 2022: 1.74%
According to the Assintel Report 2020, the Italian ICT sector doubled its growth in 2019 compared to the previous year, despite a nationwide stagnation. It reached EUR24.2 billion, representing a 3.8% increase over 2018. The sector accounts for about 1.4% of GDP, slightly lower than the EU average of 1.7%. However, the country ranks among the leading European nations for using cloud computing services by enterprises and is investing heavily in digital transformation and innovation. The National Recovery and Resilience Plan allocates 27% of its total resources to the digital transition, including creating national R&D centers specialized in advanced simulation, quantum computing, and big data analytics.
Share of The BECH Index 2022: 1.77%
Mexico’s ICT sector is diverse and has vast growth potential. According to GlobalData, the market was valued at $56.8 billion in 2020 and is expected to reach $81.2 billion by 2026, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 6.2% during the forecast period (2021-2026). The sector accounts for about 4.5% of the GDP, higher than the Latin American average of 3.7%. The main drivers of the sector’s growth are the increasing adoption of cloud services, data analytics, artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, and cybersecurity solutions by various sectors of the economy. The Mexican government has also implemented several initiatives to promote digital transformation and connectivity, such as the National Digital Strategy, the National Broadband Program, and the Internet for All project.
Share of The BECH Index 2022: 2.28%
France ranks 10th in our list of the top information technology countries in the world. France’s ICT sector is a large and growing market offering various IT solutions and services opportunities. The market was valued at $112.07 billion in 2021 and will grow at a CAGR of 7.3% to reach $159.25 billion by 2026. Systems design and integration is the largest product/service category in the ICT market, with a 6.6% market share, followed by SaaS. Additionally, the sector accounted for 3.86% of GDP in 2014, higher than Spain or Italy but lower than Germany.
9. United Kingdom
Share of The BECH Index 2022: 2.38%
The UK’s IT sector is vast and vibrant. According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), 92% of adults in the UK were recent internet users in 2020, up from 91% in 2019. Furthermore, almost all adults aged 16 to 44 in the UK were recent internet users (99%), compared with 54% of adults aged 75 years and over. Also, CompTIA’s State of the Tech Workforce UK report suggests that the tech sector employed just under two million workers in 2021, accounting for 6.3% of the total UK workforce. Additionally, Tech Nation’s 2021 report found that the UK tech sector attracted $15 billion in venture capital investment in 2020, more than France ($5.2 billion) and Germany ($5.4 billion) combined. The UK also ranked third globally for tech unicorns (valued at over $1 billion), with 80 such companies as of January 2021.
Share of The BECH Index 2022: 2.43%
Indonesia’s IT sector is one of the country’s most promising and growing sectors, driven by the increasing demand for better information and communication services among the population and the government. The sector’s value was estimated at $6.47 billion in 2019 and was projected to reach $7.11 billion in 2020. This represents about 0.7% of GDP in 2019. The sector’s growth is expected to be supported by four platforms: cloud, mobile, social media, and big data/analytics.
Share of The BECH Index 2022: 2.48%
Brazil has the most valuable IT sector in Latin America. According to Statista, the market value was estimated at $11.3 billion in 2021, representing 2.54% of the global IT demand. The software industry segment accounted for $4.6 billion of this value, with software applications being the leading sub-segment. The sector also generated a revenue of $76.7 billion in 2020, equivalent to 5.6% of the country’s GDP. Most of this revenue was generated in the state of São Paulo.
Share of The BECH Index 2022: 2.96%
The Russian IT sector is a steadily developing industry that accounted for 3.8% of its GDP in 2020. The market’s revenue in 2020 was estimated to range from $23.86 to $31.43 billion—the largest segment being IT equipment, followed by IT services and software. Domestic solutions dominate the software industry. Additionally, the number of IT specialists in the country in 2021 was estimated at 1.4 million, with software developers being the most common position. Also, the sector has vast innovation potential, with 1,228 patents filed in 2020. Russia ranks sixth in our list of the top information technology countries in the world.
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Disclosure: None. Top 20 Information Technology Countries in the World is originally published on Insider Monkey.