Guyana has, in the latest World Bank International Financial Corporation’s Doing Business 2012: Doing Business in a More Transparent World report, slipped one place down the ratings to 114 out of 183 economies examined.
However, in the region St Lucia is the best spot to conduct business rated at 52 while Antigua and Barbuda follows second at 57.
Nearer to home, Guyana fares better than Venezuela which stood at a dismal 177, Brazil at 126 and Suriname at 158.
Singapore is the top country in the world whose regulations make it relatively simple to do business.
That country is followed by Hong Kong, New Zealand and the US.
Doing Business 2012 is the ninth in a series of annual reports investigating the regulations that enhance business activity and those that constrain it.
It presents quantitative indicators on business regulation and the protection of property rights that can be compared across 183 economies—from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe—and over time.
Regulations affecting 11 areas of the life of a business are covered: starting a business, dealing with construction permits, getting electricity, registering property, getting credit, protecting investors, paying taxes, trading across borders, enforcing contracts, resolving insolvency and employing workers.
The data are current as of June 1, 2011. According to the report, worldwide, 125 economies implemented 245 reforms making it easier to do business in 2010/11, about 13 per cent more than in the previous year.
The report noted that against the backdrop of the global financial and economic crisis, more economies strengthened their insolvency regime in 2010/11 than in any previous year.
Twenty-nine economies implemented insolvency reforms, up from 16 the previous year and 18 the year before.
According to the report, only two decades ago some of these 20 economies faced challenges similar to those in many lower-income economies today.
In a case, the World Bank cited Consider Norway’s property registry. Today it is one of the world’s most efficient. But in 1995 its paper records required 30 kilometers of shelving and were growing at a rate of one kilometer a year. Norway took steps to change this. First it merged the land department and survey information, then digitized title certificates. In 2002 it amended the 50-year-old Land Transfer Act to allow online titling.
Online registration has been required by law since 2008.
Sweden undertook a systematic review of all regulations in the 1980s. Any unjustified requirements were cut in a “guillotine” initiative.
(Mexico took a similar approach in the 1990s.) In Korea the Presidential Council on National Competitiveness, created in 2008, identified regulatory reform as one of four pillars to improve the economy’s competitiveness, along with public sector innovation, investment promotion, and legal and institutional advancement.
Reviewing Korea’s business regulations, the council found that 15 per cent had not been revised since 1998. The council applied sunset clauses to more than 600 regulations and 3,500 administrative rules.
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