Washington D.C., October 20, 2011—A
new IFC and World Bank report finds that for the ninth consecutive year,
Eastern Europe and Central Asia led other regions in improving regulations
Released today, Doing Business 2012:
Doing Business in a More Transparent World assesses regulations affecting
domestic firms in 183 economies. The report ranks the economies in 10 areas
of business regulation, such as starting a business, resolving insolvency,
and trading across borders. The study’s methodology expanded this year
to include indicators on getting electricity connections. On the list of
the most improved economies on the ease of doing business, two countries
from Europe and Central Asia are among the top three in the world: Moldova
is number two – moving up 18 places from 99 to 81 – and the Former Yugoslav
Republic of Macedonia is number three – moving up 12 places from 34 to
This past year, 21 of the region’s
24 economies improved business regulations for domestic firms by implementing
a total of 53 reforms in areas such as resolving insolvency, dealing with
construction permitting, enforcing contracts, and protecting investors.
Amid a global economic crisis, 40 percent of the region’s economies improved
insolvency proceedings by implementing such measures as amended bankruptcy
Ranked 16th, Georgia leads
the region in the ease of doing business. Georgia continued its broad program
of reform by simplifying business start-up, and expanding access to credit.
Since 2005, it has introduced new company and customs codes, a revamped
property registry, broad judicial reform, and a credit bureau.
Armenia rose six places in the global
ranking to 55 by implementing five regulatory and institutional reforms
between June 2010 and May 2011, the most in the region. Cyprus climbed
to the 40th spot by strengthening investor protections.
The Russian Federation eased the process
of registering property, reduced the number of documents needed for trade,
and made getting electricity less costly by revising the connection tariffs.
Georgia, Latvia, FYR Macedonia, Moldova, the Russian Federation, and Ukraine
each implemented four regulatory reforms.
New data show that improving access
to information on business regulations helps entrepreneurs. “Increasing
transparency and access to regulatory information is important to creating
a healthier business environment,” said Sylvia Solf, lead author of the
report. “To date, 60 percent of economies in Eastern Europe and Central
Asia provide easy access to fee schedules or documentation requirements
for trade, business start-up, construction permits, or electricity connections.”
A new measure that looks at how economies
changed their business regulations over the past six years shows that all
economies in Eastern Europe and Central Asia have made their regulatory
environments more business-friendly. “Research shows that a streamlined
business regulatory environment helps a country’s economic growth,” said
Augusto Lopez-Claros, Director, Global Indicators and Analysis, World Bank
Group. “By simplifying regulations and expanding access to credit, countries
in Eastern Europe and Central Asia continue to enhance opportunities for
About the Doing Business report
Doing Business analyzes regulations
that apply to an economy’s businesses during their life cycle, including
start-up and operations, trading across borders, paying taxes, and resolving
insolvency. The aggregate ease of doing business rankings are based on
10 indicators and cover 183 economies. Previous year’s rankings are back-calculated
to account for the addition of new indicator(s), data corrections, and
methodology changes in existing indicators so as to provide a meaningful
comparison with the new rankings. Doing Business does not
measure all aspects of the business environment that matter to firms and
investors. For example, it does not measure security, macroeconomic stability,
corruption, the level of skills, or the strength of financial systems.
Its findings have stimulated policy debates in more than 80 economies and
enabled a growing body of research on how firm-level regulation relates
to economic outcomes across economies.
For more information about the Doing
Business report series, please visit: www.doingbusiness.org.
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About the World Bank Group
The World Bank Group is one of the world’s
largest sources of funding and knowledge for developing countries. It comprises
five closely associated institutions: the International Bank for Reconstruction
and Development (IBRD) and the International Development Association (IDA),
which together form the World Bank; the International Finance Corporation
(IFC); the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA); and the International
Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID). Each institution
plays a distinct role in the mission to fight poverty and improve living
standards for people in the developing world. For more information, please
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