Kenya makes gains on ease of doing business

Kenya makes gains on ease of doing business

For three years in a row, New Zealand topped the worldwide financial body's Doing Business Report, released on Wednesday, followed by Singapore and Denmark. India is the only South Asian country to achieve this distinction two years in a row, and only nine other countries have accomplished this since 2011.

India was ranked at the 142nd position among 190 nations when the Modi government came to power in 2014.

Grant of a construction permit, trading across the borders, starting a business, getting credit, getting electricity and enforcing contracts showed improvement.

The latest results are predicated on the country's pursuit of reforms, although these predate the arrival of the Pakatan Harapan government; according to the report, its data was current up to May 1 whereas the new administration was voted in over a week later. "India streamlined the process of obtaining a building permit and made it faster and less expensive to obtain a construction permit", the report said.

"Things have improved considerably on the ground and these have now been reflected in the World Bank report", said Soumya Kanti Ghosh, chief economic adviser to the State Bank of India group.

"The response from the private sector has also underscored the need for increased engagement between reform-implementing organs of government and the private sector players to ensure we are able to record sustainable progress".

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The World Bank's Doing Business 2019 report, themed: "Training for Reform" and released on Wednesday evening, placed the Philippines at 124 out of the 190 economies tracked, down 11 places from 113 previous year. Brazil made the most improvements, with four reforms.The bulk of the reforms in the region were aimed at improving the legal rights of borrowers and lenders with respect to secured transactions, and the process of starting a business.

However, compared to past year, India saw its ranking dip on various other parameters, such as "registering property", "protecting minority investors", "paying taxes" and "resolving insolvency".

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Malta fared best in the area of "Dealing with construction permits", where the country was ranked in a global 45 position.

The economist further said, "PM Imran has taken a personal interest in improving the business and it is also a part of his 100-day agenda". "India made paying taxes easier by replacing many indirect taxes with a single indirect tax, the GST, for the entire country". For example, getting an electricity connection now takes 185 days as compared to 215, previously.

The Getting Credit score slid to 5 from 30 past year, even as it said that credit for micro, small and medium enterprises grew 19% - which is the fastest in the region, according to the Finance department.

"In the past 10 years, Hong Kong has maintained its position among the world's top ranking economies in the report, re-affirming our favourable business environment for overseas companies to set up their regional headquarters and offices, and for all businesses to flourish", the spokesman said.

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