WorldStage Newsonline—Nigeria has been raked 169 out of the 189 economies surveyed in the 2016 World Bank Group’s annual ease of doing business measurement released today. The result showed that the country made a one step climb from 170 position in 2015 report.
According to the World Bank, Doing Business 2016: Measuring Regulatory Quality and Efficiency finds that 85 developing economies implemented 169 business reforms during the past year, compared with 154 reforms the previous year. High income economies carried out an additional 62 reforms, bringing the total for the past year to 231 reforms in 122 economies around the world.
The World Bank Group’s annual ease of doing business measurement said developing economies quickened the pace of their business reforms during the last 12 months to make it easier for local businesses to start and operate.
The report indicated that Nigeria implemented two reforms during the 12 months period.
The improvements were said to have been made from Registering property as in “Nigeria made transferring property in Lagos less costly by reducing fees for property transactions.”
The second one was in Protecting minority investors as in “Nigeria strengthened minority investor protections by requiring that related-party transactions be subject to external review and to approval by disinterested shareholders. This reform applies to both Kano and Lagos.”
The ranking of Nigeria out of 189 in the four major indices are Starting a business (rank) 139; Dealing with construction permits (rank) 175; Getting electricity (rank) 182 and Registering property (rank) 181.
In the global ranking stakes, Singapore retains its top spot. Joining it on the list of the top 10 economies with the most business-friendly regulatory environments are New Zealand, in second place; Denmark (3); Republic of Korea (4); Hong Kong SAR, China (5); United Kingdom (6); United States (7); Sweden (8); Norway (9); and Finland (10).
The top ten ranking in the Sub-Sahara Africa were occupied by Mauritius ranked 32 in the world from 31 in 2015 followed by Rwanda at 62 from 55; Botswana maintaining 72 as before; South Africa at 73 from 69; Seychelles at 95 from 104; Zambia at 97 from 91; Namibia maintaining 101; Swaziland at 105 from 102; Kenya at 108 from 129 and Ghana sharing 114 with Lesotho from 112 and 110 respectively.
The Fact Sheet of Doing Business 2016 for Sub-Saharan Africa further showed that “Economies in Sub-Saharan Africa have an average ranking on the ease of doing business of 143.
“Mauritius has the region’s highest ranking, at 32. Rwanda has its second highest (62), followed by Botswana (72) and South Africa (73).
*Other large economies in the region and their rankings are Kenya (108), Nigeria (169), and Uganda (122).
*Those with the region’s lowest rankings are Eritrea (189), South Sudan (187), and the Central African Republic (185).
* Rwanda ranks among the best in the world in Getting Credit (2) and Registering Property (12).
* Average rankings for Sub-Saharan Africa show the most room for improvement in Getting Electricity (149), Trading across Borders (136), and Paying Taxes (131)—all areas where it ranks last among regions. In cross-border trade, for example, completing border compliance procedures takes an exporter in the region 108 hours and $542 on average, compared with a global average of 64 hours and $389.
*Thirty-five of 47 economies in Sub-Saharan Africa (74 percent) implemented at least one reform making it easier to do business in the past year, 69 in total—up slightly from the annual average of 67 reforms over the past 5 years.
*Sub-Saharan Africa accounted for 14 of the 32 reforms globally in Getting Credit. Of the 14 reforms, 12 focused on improving the availability of credit information—more than in any other region.
*The region accounts for 5 of the 10 top improvers this year. These 5 are Uganda, Kenya, Mauritania, Senegal, and Benin.
*Rwanda implemented the most reforms in Sub-Saharan Africa in the past year, with 6. Kenya, Madagascar, and Senegal followed with 4 reforms each. Some details of the reforms:
- Rwanda implemented a credit scoring service in May 2015, supporting the ability of banks and other financial institutions to assess the creditworthiness of potential borrowers. And it made starting a business easier by eliminating the need for new companies to open a bank account in order to register for value added tax.
- Kenya launched government service centers offering company preregistration services in major towns, reducing the time required to start a business by 4 days. Ten years ago, starting a business in Kenya took 54 days. Now it takes just 26 days—less than the regional average.
- Madagascar strengthened minority investor protections by requiring that directors with a conflict of interest fully disclose the nature of their interest to the board of directors.
- In Senegal the electricity utility improved the regulation of the connection process and lowered the cost by reducing the security deposit.
*Members of the Organization for the Harmonization of Business Law in Africa were particularly active: 14 of the 17 economies implemented business regulation reforms in the past year—29 reforms in total. Twenty-four of these reforms reduced the complexity and cost of regulatory processes, while the other 5 strengthened legal institutions.