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Eastern Europe: Many Countries Ready For Tech Economy

Washington, 28 August 2000 (RFE/RL) -- A report on how many countries are prepared to take part in the electronic economy ranks many Eastern European countries highly.

The report, issued on August 22, was prepared by McConnell International, a consulting group that helped many nations prepare for the Year-2000 rollover.

Estonia was given the highest rating of the 42 nations surveyed. It received the highest marks possible for government leadership, an able workforce and the climate for electronic business. Estonia got the second-highest marks for Internet availability and for electronic security.

Hungary got a top mark for its work force, and second ratings for the other categories. Bulgaria got secondary marks for its leadership and workforce, and low marks for the remaining categories. Similar rankings were given to the Czech Republic, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, and Slovenia.

Russia received the lowest mark in all but one of the categories -- the quality of its workforce -- and at that it got a secondary rating.

The report did not survey the former Soviet republics of the Caucasus and Central Asia. The only Balkan nation it addressed was Slovenia. Belarus and Ukraine also were not included in the study.